Working in the maritime industry certainly has its share of risks. Off-shore workers bravely face the possibility of accidents and personal injury every time they go to work, whether they navigate a giant seafaring vessel, operate a tugboat, or work in off-shore drilling. Many of these proud workers live right here in Egan.
While these types of jobs can be thrilling, and often pay quite well, it can be hard to know who to turn to if the worst does happen. If you’ve been hurt in a maritime accident, an attorney from our firm can help. Our off-shore accident lawyers are honored to serve the Egan area and can handle your injury claim from start to finish.
Common Causes of Maritime Injuries
Accidents at sea can happen for many different reasons, causing injuries to both off-shore workers and recreational boaters. Injuries sustained in maritime accidents can be severe, especially in the case of drowning or falling overboard. Some of the more common causes of maritime accidents can include:
Explosions and Fires
Oil and gas drilling rigs are dangerous places to work due to their highly flammable materials. Explosions can be caused by human error, such as carelessness when handling equipment or failure to follow safety procedures.
Slips and Falls
Even without other hazards, slip and fall injuries can happen on drilling rigs or vessels where floors can be slippery with oil, water, or mud. These accidents can range from minor bruises to serious head injuries if employees slip during their daily operations.
Speeding is one of the leading causes of off-shore accidents that can easily lead to fatal collisions. When operating a boat or vessel, speed limits should be strictly followed. Many wrongful deaths could be prevented if boats were not operating at excessive speeds.
Lack of Proper Safety Training
Maritime injuries often occur when a worker simply isn’t trained properly. Workers who operate heavy machinery or work on oil rigs must receive adequate safety instruction from their supervisors. A lack of this training can lead to a variety of hazardous situations and accidents.
Improperly Stored Cargo
Cargo that’s improperly stowed or stacked can also lead to injury. Improperly stored cargo can fall over or collapse, which can cause the crew member to be trapped or crushed by the cargo itself.
Machinery that’s not maintained properly or lacks proper safeguards can also cause serious harm to those who work near it. All machinery (grinders, drills, cranes, winches, or any required equipment) must be inspected and kept in good repair, regardless of the type of machine it may be.
For a free legal consultation with a off-shore accident lawyer serving Egan, call (337) 777-7777
The Jones Act
The Jones Act is a federal law that allows injured seamen to sue for compensation. To be considered an official seaman under the Jones Act, you must work on a navigating vessel (this could apply to an oil rig as long as it has some navigation), your work must contribute to the purpose of the vessel, and you must spend at least 30 percent of your time onboard.
Seamen must file their suit under the Jones Act within three years of the date of the accident or within three years of the date they discover their injury. Additionally, you must inform your employer of the accident within seven days.
Filing a successful claim can be complicated, especially if multiple parties may be responsible for your injuries. An Egan off-shore accident attorney can help gather evidence and build your case.
Egan Off-Shore Accident Lawyer Near Me (337) 777-7777
The Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act
The Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA) is a federal law that provides medical benefits and income to maritime workers injured on the job. The LHWCA applies to nearly any maritime worker who isn’t considered a seaman and would not qualify for the Jones Act, as long as they work on navigable waters or adjoining areas. This includes harbor workers, dockworkers, shipbuilders, ship repairers, and shipping terminal workers.
Under the LHWCA, you could be entitled to compensation for all necessary medical treatment, temporary disability benefits for lost wages, and permanent disability benefits if you don’t completely recover from your injuries. However, you must file your injury claim within one year of the accident, and you must report the injury to your employer within 30 days.
How an Egan Off-Shore Accident Lawyer Can Help
A lawyer can do a lot for you and your case, including:
- Speaking to eyewitnesses
- Studying evidence, including photos, video surveillance tapes, or police reports to determine cause and liability
- Working with your physicians to determine the severity of your injuries and the potential cost of treatment
- Negotiating with the insurance company and your employer’s attorneys
- Answering your questions and explaining anything you find confusing
- Keeping you updated on developments in your case
- Representing you in court if a settlement can’t be reached
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Can I Afford an Off-Shore Accident Lawyer in Egan?
At Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers, we understand that unexpected injuries usually result in unexpected medical bills. This financial strain can be increased if you’ve had to miss work to recover. This is one of the reasons our Egan attorneys work on a contingency basis.
This means that you won’t have to worry about paying any upfront costs or fees out of pocket. If we win, and you obtain compensation, your lawyer will simply take his or her legal fees out of a percentage of your total settlement package. If we lose, you don’t owe us anything.
Call Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers Today
If you were injured off-shore in a work-related accident, you could be entitled to compensation for your injuries. Maritime law is complex and can be hard to understand. Tackling your case all on your own can be overwhelming. Our attorneys can attend to your case fully and build a solid claim for your settlement. At Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers, we can work on your injury claim while you rest and heal. Contact us today for a free consultation.