Falls Are Leading Cause of Maritime Injuries
Working on the high seas presents challenges that are unique from other industries. As a seaman, not only do you have to battle with the treacherous, unpredictable waters, you also handle heavy equipment and machinery on surfaces that are often slippery. A slippery or oily deck can pose a serious fall hazard to crewmembers. Falls are common maritime accidents that can lead to severe injuries and death. If you have sustained a maritime injury from a fall while working on a vessel, you may be entitled to compensation under the Jones Act.
Even though a wet, slippery deck just appears to be part of the normal work environment for a seaman, there are actions that the vessel owner can take to prevent fall accidents, such as installing non-skid coatings. Falls on ships can also occur if there are old, worn down stairs or ladders or if the vessel is poorly lit.
Common maritime injuries sustained from fall accidents include spinal cord injury, head trauma, neck injury, broken bones, paralysis and severe damage to the back. These types of maritime accidents have also been associated with internal injuries, which can lead to death. It is crucial to seek medical attention immediately following a fall.
A vessel owner can be held responsible for maritime injuries when negligence was involved or in a situation where the vessel is unseaworthy. There are many factors that can cause a vessel to become unseaworthy, including the existence of a dangerous condition or poor ship maintenance. Just because a vessel is considered to be unseaworthy, does not mean it is in danger of sinking.
Under the Jones Act, an injured seaman can pursue compensation for lost wages, past and future medical expenses, pain and suffering, mental anguish and disfigurement. If you have been injured in a maritime accident, you need to contact an experienced maritime injury lawyer. Call Attorney Steve Lee for a free legal consultation today at 713-921-4171 or 800-232-3711.