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The Jones Act: What is a seaworthy vessel?

On Behalf of | Jul 1, 2022 | Jones Act

If you or family are working at sea or at a seaport, you may want to learn more about what constitutes a seaworthy vessel. Those who live in New York as well as near any major seaport might want to know more about the Jones Act and what has consideration as a seaworthy vessel. This may be especially important if you have an injury at sea.

According to law sources, establishing liability is essential when there is an injury. The vessel should be seaworthy, which will be important in determining if it fits the Jones Act definition. A ship should be a safe place to work.

Providing a seaworthy vessel

A provision at the time of the Constitution made benefits of maintenance and cure. After the shipping industry expanded, it was necessary to provide seamen with a vessel that was reasonably fit for its intended purpose and voyage. It was now possible for the seaman to receive damages against the vessel and its owner.

Vessel should fit its use

The ship must be sufficiently strong, staunch and appropriately equipped to allow it to safely engage in its intended use. It should be able to withstand unexpected weather changes and the seasonable weather where it is in use.

Injuries happen

Maintenance and cure is part of the Jones Act. It includes a daily stipend and coverage of medical expenses. The Merchant Marine Act of 1920, which is commonly called the Jones Act, provided seamen with a remedy for negligence. It now extends to the injured and the seaworthiness of the vessel upon which they work.

The Jones Act considers a vessel seaworthy if it follows industry standards, is safely equipped and is able to withstand the weather where it sails. Seaworthiness helps ensure the safety of the crew.