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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.
  • $4,400,000.00 jury award to a former shipmate who sustained a shoulder injury while at sea. The third mate had to undergo multiple surgeries and will not be able to become a captain because of the injury.
  • $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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Human error may have caused fatal crane accident

Shipbuilders in New York may be all too familiar with the many things that can go wrong in a shipyard. While a misstep can cause a shipyard employee’s own injury or fatality, mistakes due to negligence, noncompliance or carelessness can just as easily affect those in the surrounding area. When it comes to heavy equipment, the responsibility is high for those who operate it, and also those who perform maintenance and ensure that safety standards are met.

The collapse of a tower crane killed five workers who were in a break area on an oil platform being built by Samsung Heavy Industries. Authorities speculate that the workers responsible for operating and signaling may have made errors that caused the heavily loaded tower crane to collide with a gantry crane. An investigation into the circumstances is ongoing, and compliance issues with the equipment have not been ruled out as a factor in the accident.

First responders believe that those who died on the scene were struck directly by the crane or its load. A metal chain also crashed into the break area and may have been responsible for the injuries of some of the 20 or more workers affected. One of these victims later died from his injuries.

New Yorkers who are hurt in shipyard accidents may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses and related costs through the Longshore and Harbor Workers' Compensation Act. An attorney may be able to help gather the documentation and evidence that could lead to financial assistance under this law, or through other means.

Source: The Maritime Executive, “Death Toll Rises in Shipyard Crane Accident,” May 2, 2017

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