By working in the maritime industry, you know that your job puts you in a dangerous position. Whether you work aboard an oil rig or vessel, there are dangers you must be aware of. Common accidents involving maritime employees include fire and explosions, crane injuries, slips, and falls, and more. When you are injured offshore, you must act quickly to work on filing a claim. The ship employer or owner will already be weighing their options after your injury, so working with our Cueria Law Firm attorneys is essential to ensure that you know your options and take legal action when needed.
What Steps Should I Take if I am Injured Offshore?
1. Protect Your Rights:
To protect your rights as an employee who has been injured offshore, you need an attorney that is well-versed in the maritime law. When an individual is injured offshore, the risk management team of the maritime company will act immediately. This could mean they are gathering statements and/ or reviewing evidence. Before you talk to anyone about the incident, you need an attorney. Case managers of the company or consultants can be tough and want to talk to you and try to get you to complete certain steps, something you do not have to do.
You must be very careful and assume that anything you are to stay would be recorded. Speaking to one of our Louisiana personal injury attorneys will ensure that your best interests are considered, and a claim filed for compensation if needed. Our attorneys can help you to protect yourself, something that your company is not going to be doing, as they are only looking out for themselves.
2. Give Us a Call:
When you are injured offshore in a maritime employment position, receive medical care immediately, and then contact our office. Contacting us as soon as possible will ensure that any evidence can be reviewed, and all details of the case considered. We can then decide on the best course of action for your individual case. In most instances, the injured party has the right to file a claim for compensation due to the negligence of a fellow employee or the company operating the vessel or oil rig.
Compensation can be filed for by our attorneys that will help the injured party to pay for medical bills as well as for lost wages. Our expert attorneys have vast experience in dealing with maritime injury cases and are ready to review your case. Let our team provide you with optimal legal advice so you can act accordingly for your compensation needs.
3. Avoid Making These Mistakes When You are Injured Offshore:
Employment positions within the maritime industry can be very dangerous. From working on an oil rig to a sea-worthy vessel, accidents occur on a regular basis. If you have been injured while employed by a maritime company, you may be due compensation based on the company’s negligence. A maritime company will go to great lengths to avoid paying you anything for your injuries, going so far as to trying several legal tactics. Below are a few examples of what to avoid when injured on the job:
- Avoid Giving a Recorded Statement
If you are injured, your company may try to get you to record a statement about the injury. An insurance company may be hired to look into your injury claim and also ask for a recorded statement. However, the company you work for and an insurance company do not have your best interests at heart. The goal of the company or insurance adjuster is to get a statement from you and then use the information to try and transfer the fault to you. Instead of giving a statement, speak to our New Orleans personal injury attorneys. At Cueria Law Firm, we have the experience to help you win your case.
- Avoid Seeing A Specific Doctor
Maritime law dictates that an injured employee has the right to see their own physician when injured on the job. A maritime company, however, will often try to insist that you be treated by a doctor that works for the company. This visit could harm any claim you have. A company doctor can deny or stop any needed testing that could prove just how serious your injury is. A doctor that works for the company is not on your side. See your own physician to ensure you receive proper medical care from a professional who has your best interests in mind.
Filing a claim for compensation after you’ve been injured offshore can be tough. The maritime company will have the money at their disposal to be able to hire attorneys to fight your case. By relying on our New Orleans personal injury attorneys, you have a team by your side that is ready to fight for you.
What are the Most Common Causes of Offshore Injury?
There are many ways that an employee within the maritime industry can be injured offshore. There is danger within each area of employment, from diving to operating crane machinery. Below are a few examples of who one can be injured while on the job.
- Diving accident—divers can easily become injured due to sea life, equipment malfunction, or improper training, along with unsafe weather conditions.
- Crane failure—cranes that are improperly maintained or operated poorly can lead to injury to the driver or others in the vicinity
- Slip and fall—areas of the ship that are not maintained can lead to slip and falls such as railings or decking
- Vessel collision—if the vessel you work on collides with another, it can lead to injury or even death
- Explosion or fire—it is not uncommon for employees of oil rigs offshore to suffer from an injury due to an explosion or fire
- Lifting accident—another area of concern is lifting equipment or materials. Whether by hand or by machinery, lifting heavy materials can result in injury
Other Causes of Maritime Injury in New Orleans:
Cell Phone and Wireless Device Use
Because of the recent technological advances in wireless device technology, including cell phone devices, ship owners, and operators have been recommended by the Coast Guard to follow property safety protocols when using such devices when operating a vessel. Cell phone or wireless device use can be a distraction to the operator, which can lead to an offshore accident. Operators can easily have an accident when navigating, which can lead to accidents involving crew members.
Crew members are also supposed to follow the safe use of mobile devices, taking care to avoid use when loading or unloading cargo as well as completing other activities while onboard the ship. Distraction by crew members or the operator of the vessel can lead to accidents involving negligence, which means you might have a case for compensation.
Fatigue to Blame for Maritime Casualties
Working at sea can take a toll on your body. The hours and effort put into keeping a vessel seaworthy and operational are vast. When first starting to work on a seafaring vessel, you will have to work hard to get your body acclimated to this new environment. Injuries sustained on a boat due to fatigue are covered under Maritime law. Working with attorneys who are familiar with the Jones Act law is the best way to find out if you are owed compensation for your fatigue-related injuries. Below is some information regarding fatigue and how it can create very dangerous situations.
How Can Fatigue Be Prevented?
The number of hours worked on any given shift on a boat is directly related to the decisions made by the management in place. If workers are not getting the proper amount of rest on a seafaring vessel, then according to Maritime law, the fault lies with the owners of the boat and management. This form of negligence can be grounds for a lawsuit if you are harmed on a vessel due to a lack of rest. Fatigue can cause a variety of problems and can impair your judgment to the point where it leads to you making costly mistakes.
Fatigue Can Lead to a Breakdown in Communication
A vital part of working on a ship is being able to communicate with other employees. A lot of different factors have to come together in order for the work on a boat to get done in a safe and efficient manner. Being fatigued can make it very hard for you to properly communicate with others, which can cause mistakes to be made. Being deprived of sleep is prohibited in the Jones Act law, which means accidents directly related to fatigue can be pursued in a court of law.
Sleep Deprivation Can Lead to Heavy Equipment Accidents
The deck of most vessels is filled with heavy equipment like overhead cranes. When operating one of these pieces of heavy equipment, you will need to be alert in order to avoid accidents. Not getting enough sleep can make you feel worn down and out of it.
Fatigue can lead to you making a variety of mistakes while operating the heavy equipment on the vessel you work on. The injuries sustained from heavy equipment accidents can prohibit you from working. Getting compensation from a fatigue-related accident is only possible when using an experienced Jones Act lawyer.
Slip and Fall Accidents
Failing to get enough sleep can also lead to you being more accident-prone. Having a slip and fall accident on the deck of a ship can cause a lot of damage to your body. Seeking out compensation for the injuries caused by a fatigue-induced slip and fall accident is important and a lot easier when seeking out advice from a legal professional.
The professionals at Cueria Law Firm will get the particulars of your case and then give you advice on whether or not you need to pursue a lawsuit. Be sure to contact us for more information on how we can help you.
Other Offshore Accidents in the Maritime Industry
Accidents are, unfortunately, a common occurrence in the maritime industry. Click this link to read more about the different types of offshore accidents in the maritime industry.