Seamen and other maritime workers are often at risk for severe injury, due to the dangerous conditions they are subjected to while on their vessels. However, many of these injuries are caused by negligence in the failure to follow safety protocols and take necessary precautions.
From the most minor cuts and bruises to paralysis, seamen may suffer a variety of injuries while on the boat. These injuries typically occur as a result of one of the following mishaps.
Equipment failure or misuse
The employer and/or owner of the boat must provide workers with a ‘seaworthy’ vessel. This means that the vessel must meet all industry standards and safety regulations. Engine failure, crane system failure, or another mechanical failure is often caused by an employer’s failure to properly maintain, failure to inspect, failure to properly secure equipment, or failure to provide adequate training with regards to safe use of the equipment.
The tumultuous conditions of a vessel, combined with a slippery ship deck, can prove to be a dangerous combination. Slip-and-fall accidents can be caused by improper maintenance of carpeting and flooring, lack of guardrails, or inadequate lighting.
Loading and unloading heavy ship cargo by hand or through use of a crane can be dangerous for workers. Workers may be at risk for repetitive motion injuries, back strain, and broken bones.
Hazardous material accidents
Many vessels are used to transport hazardous materials from one location to another. The improper handling of these materials can result in serious injuries.
Maritime work is inherently dangerous, but the negligent actions of employers can significantly add to that risk. If you have been injured in a maritime accident, a maritime law attorney can help you recover damages for your injuries.