Louisiana employs more maritime workers than anywhere else in the country. The maritime industry has plenty of advantages as the work can be thrilling, opportunities abound, and the pay is good. A lot of these workers live right here in Coteau Holmes.
However, the maritime industry also comes with a great deal of personal risk for those who work in it. Off-shore accidents can be absolutely disastrous, causing damage to both the ship or platform and the people who work on them. If you’ve been injured in an off-shore accident, a Coteau Holmes off-shore accident lawyer can help.
What Makes Off-shore Injuries So Dangerous?
Off-shore workers, especially those who work on oil rigs and platforms, face plenty of hazards while on the job. Drilling for gas and oil in off-shore rigs is one of the most dangerous jobs in the country.
The presence of oil and water on the decks can make them extra slippery and increases the risk of slips and falls. Furthermore, oil rigs have plenty of heavy machinery that can cause severe injuries when they malfunction or fail.
Since oil rigs tend to be miles into the sea, emergency care can be limited to basic first aid before the coast guard arrives. Plenty of injuries can get progressively worse the longer they are left untreated. This means that off-shore workers are much less likely to receive emergency treatment in time, making their already severe injuries much worse. By the time the coast guard arrives, the accident victim may have even succumbed to their injuries.
For a free legal consultation with a off-shore accident lawyer serving Coteau Holmes, call (337) 777-7777
Causes of Common Off-Shore Accidents
Off-shore accident injuries can be severe or even fatal. The following are some of the main causes to be aware of:
- Equipment Failure: Oil rigs use large, complex, and dangerous machinery to extract and refine oil and natural gas. If this equipment fails or malfunctions while in use, it could crush, electrocute, or severely injure the workers.
- Improper Training: The equipment used on oil rigs requires extensive training and experience to use safely. The chances of sustaining off-shore injuries increase significantly if a worker isn’t properly trained or doesn’t exercise proper caution while using the equipment.
- Deck Hazards: Working on the deck of an oil rig can be extremely dangerous. Off-shore workers are constantly surrounded by numerous fall, trip, pinch point, crush, and electric hazards. On top of that, any sudden movement of the rig itself can cause them to slip and fall.
- Other Maritime Vessels: Off-shore oil rigs usually rely on helicopters, barges, and tugboats to transport people and equipment to and from the rig. It’s not uncommon for workers to get injured on barges and tugboats or during helicopter crashes.
- Fires and Explosions: There is plenty of flammable material on oil rigs and platforms. Some of the deadliest oil rig accidents have been caused by fires and explosions. Workers often have to jump at least 100 feet to the water below to avoid the fire, which can also cause significant injury if it isn’t done right.
Coteau Holmes Off-Shore Accident Lawyer Near Me (337) 777-7777
Common Off-shore Injuries
The chances of a maritime worker walking away from an off-shore accident with no injuries are slim. Even if you aren’t severely injured, your injuries may worsen as you wait for the coast guard to arrive and provide emergency medical attention.
Head injuries are especially common due to falls and blows from unsecured cargo. This can result in concussions and traumatic brain injuries that could potentially leave you disabled for life. Neck, back, and spinal cord injuries are also common after off-shore accidents and can result in long-term disabilities.
Off-shore accidents can also cause severe crushing injuries, broken bones, lung damage due to exposure to chemicals, loss of limbs, and loss of hearing. Rig workers may also experience frostbite or hypothermia if they work long hours in extremely cold conditions. In a worst-case scenario, victims may drown or succumb to injuries caused by an off-shore accident.
The Jones Act
The Jones Act is a federal maritime law that allows seamen to sue for compensation after an off-shore accident. To qualify as a seaman, you must work on a navigable vessel and you must spend at least 30 percent of your time on the vessel.
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The Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act
The Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA) provides coverage for off-shore workers who sustain injuries while on the job. Any worker involved in building, repairing, loading, and offloading water vessels (working on or near the water) is eligible under the LHWCA.
A Coteau Holmes off-shore accident lawyer can tell you more about these laws and determine which would be right for you.
How Can a Coteau Holmes Off-Shore Accident Lawyer Help?
The weeks and months following an off-shore accident can be very stressful. While you may be entitled to compensation from your employer, the mental strain that comes with dealing with maritime law can be challenging to say the least. Handling your entire legal case alone can be overwhelming, especially when you’re hurt, unable to work, and recovering from your injuries.
A Coteau Holmes off-shore accident attorney can collect all the relevant evidence, file the paperwork, and strive to build a solid injury case. Your lawyer can handle all communications with the insurance provider and your employer’s legal team on your behalf and negotiate your settlement. Your lawyer can also file your lawsuit and represent you in court if the negotiations aren’t successful.
Damages You Can Pursue After an Off-Shore Accident
You could be entitled to much more than your past medical expenses after an off-shore accident. Here are some of the damages your attorney could pursue on your behalf:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional anguish
- Scarring, disfigurement, and loss of limb
- Therapy and rehabilitation
- Loss of wages and loss of earning potential
- Wrongful death
Wrongful death damages could include funeral and burial expenses, your loved one’s medical bills, and compensation for pain and suffering. An off-shore accident lawyer serving the Coteau Holmes area can tell you more and gently guide you through the legal process during this difficult time.
Contact Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers Today
Have you sustained injuries due to an off-shore accident at work? At Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers, our Couteau Holmes attorneys can handle your legal case while you rest and recover from your injuries. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.