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Millions Recovered

  • $5,400,000.00 settlement involving a seaman who fell from a stairway during fire and boat drill aboard a container ship sustaining quadriplegic injuries. Partners Mellusi and Shisha personally inspected the vessel taking hundreds of measurements and still and videos of every stairway in the ship’s main deck house. The data was compared with the vessel’s design plans in our library which demonstrated the vessel had been negligently constructed in that it failed to follow the naval architect’s original design specifications.
  • $2,400,000 jury award to a licensed marine engineer who sustained permanent knee injuries while attempting to remove a 200 lb. valve from an overhead piping system. Partner Mellusi personally inspected the ship’s engine room taking detailed photos and measurements. A duplicate valve was obtained from a maritime junkyard and was brought into court along with an auto-shop mechanical hoist capable of lifting it 12 feet to demonstrate the vessel lacked suitable means to perform this work safely. The jury award was in top ten verdicts in the United States for a comparable knee injury. The case was tried to verdict in a New York Federal Court.
  • $2,980,000.00 jury award to a ship’s cook for back injury resulting from insufficient procedures for moving ship stores. Case tried in New York federal court.
  • $2,700,000.00 settlement to a mate on a Tanker vessel who sustained multiple fractures.
  • $2,000,000.00 was awarded to a barge deckhand – wrongful death.
  • $1,827,000 awarded to a marine engineer working on a US Government supply vessel who fell into an unguarded ventilation fan causing neck, shoulder and hand injuries. The case was tried non-jury before a federal judge in Baltimore Federal Court. The court award was subsequently determined to be within the highest ten verdicts for the State of Maryland in 2009.
  • $1,200,000.00 jury award to a ship’s Bosun who sustained shoulder and neck injuries while attempting to move plywood sheets on main deck of vessel during 40 knot winds. Case tried in New York Federal Court.
  • $950,000 awarded to passenger killed when his recreational boat came into collision with tow wire of tug and barge
  • $850,000 settlement, Federal Court Allentown PA., to seaman sustained herniated disk while lifting a 110 lbs crane hooks.
  • $840,000 jury award to a seaman who fell from ladder while painting sustaining fractured wrist.
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Police detective who was injured during East River rescue sues city and NYPD

When most people think about seamen who suffer injuries; individuals who work in commercial fishing or on cruise lines and shipping vessels likely spring to mind. While individuals who are injured while working aboard fishing boats, cruise ships and ocean liners are covered under the Jones Act, many other individuals who work in various professions are also eligible to claim injury benefits and take legal action under the law.

A 48-year-old counterterrorism detective with the New York City Police Department recently filed a $106 million lawsuit against the NYPD and New York City. The lawsuit stems from injuries the police detective and former U.S. Marine suffered roughly two years ago when he was involved in a rescue operation on the East River.

According to the lawsuit, the 48 year old was part of a counterterrorism patrol team when his boat received news of a distress call. The 48-year-old NYPD detective was directly involved in the rescue operation of three men whose 25-foot boat had capsized. During the course of the harried rescue operation, the detective claims he suffered serious injuries to his neck and back which have left him permanently disabled and in chronic pain.

The lawsuit was filed under provisions of the Jones Act which extends to all American seamen who perform work-related duties on sea vessels that travel on lakes, rivers and oceans. Among the plaintiff's claims cited in the lawsuit are that he was forced to perform the rescue "without the assistance of a competent crew," and that the defendants failed to provide safe working conditions and necessary safety equipment. Consequently, the main claims his injuries were suffered through no fault of his own and were solely caused due to the defendants' "negligence, recklessness and carelessness."

 

Source: New York Post, "Hero cop sues city for $106 million over boat rescue," Selim Algar, June 25, 2015

New York Daily News, "NYPD detective hurt during river rescue due to lack of ‘competent’ crew: $106M suit," John Marzulli, June 28, 2015

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