Offshore accident lawyer The ocean is the world’s most dangerous workplace. Maritime industries in the United States can be found in nearly every state, employing over 400,000 people nationwide. Shipyards, marine terminals, fishing, aquaculture, seafood processing, commercial diving, and marine transportation are all places where maritime workers can find work. Maritime workers face a higher risk of death, injury, and illness than the average American worker, according to the Centers for Disease Control.
Slips and falls, equipment failures, collisions, fires, and unsafe work practices, and negligence are all common causes of offshore injuries, which often necessitate costly medical treatment — sometimes for an extended period of time. Catastrophic injuries may prevent an injured worker who relies on his or her physical ability from returning to work. This can be devastating for families, especially if the worker is the sole breadwinner and is unable to work.
Offshore workers are subject to laws that differ from those that apply to land-based workers. If you or someone you care about has been injured or becomes ill while working offshore, we urge you to contact an experienced offshore injury attorney at Montagna Maritime Law as soon as possible to request a free case evaluation.
TYPES OF OFFSHORE INJURIES Offshore accident lawyer
When an offshore worker accepts a job in the maritime industry, it is understood that the job is physically demanding and carries inherent risks that are far more dangerous than land-based work. Injuries are common, ranging from minor to horrific, and even fatal. Minor injuries can often become much more serious over time. The following are some of the most common types of offshore injuries:
- Traumatic brain injury (TBI) can occur in a variety of ways. Offshore workers are frequently placed in construction and industrial-like environments. Traumatic brain injury can be caused by a blow to the head from a slip or fall, or by being struck by a swinging or unsecured cargo. This can result in long-term cognitive or behavioral changes.
- Spinal and back injuries – Operating heavy machinery, carrying heavy loads, and performing manual labor can be back-breaking work that requires many hours of standing, lifting, twisting, and pulling. Falls, being hit by a vehicle, or being struck by unstable loads can all result in injuries for offshore workers. A back or neck injury can cause chronic pain, limited mobility, and, in severe cases, paraplegia or quadriplegia. Even when medical attention is provided promptly, spinal and back injuries can result in long-term disabilities.
- Slips and falls – Slips and falls are among the most common — and serious — injuries. Slip and fall accidents can cause everything from concussions and contusions to broken bones. Slipping on the deck of a ship or platform can send you overboard in some cases, which immediately escalates into a dangerous situation.
- Hearing loss – If hearing protection is not provided or mandated, workers may be exposed to significant noise over time, causing their hearing to deteriorate. Tinnitus or total hearing loss can develop in some cases where work environments are sufficiently loud.
- Loss of limbs – Inadvertently walking into the path of a truck or forklift, working with cables under tension, or getting a leg caught and crushed beneath unstable cargo such as coils, pipes, plates, and tires can all result in amputation injuries. Amputation is a life-changing injury that frequently necessitates the use of a prosthetic.
Crushing injuries and broken bones – Offshore work typically involves a heavy reliance on heavy machinery, either for construction or for day-to-day work. Injuries are common when this machinery fails or when safety procedures are not followed. These types of injuries frequently result in broken or crushed bones.
Crushing injuries can also cause internal organ damage and create life-threatening situations.
Hypothermia and frostbite – Offshore and maritime workers frequently work in harsh environments at all hours of the day and night. As a result, offshore workers are frequently exposed to extremely cold conditions, which can result in hypothermia or frostbite. These dangers are exacerbated by exposure to water, which can occur as a result of harsh conditions or a fall overboard.
Drowning – A fall overboard can quickly turn into a life-threatening injury, especially if treatment is delayed. Furthermore, hypothermia can occur even in relatively warm waters.
Lung damage can occur when safety procedures are not followed or enforced, or when accidents result in spills, causing serious chemical injuries.
When these chemicals are inhaled, they can cause severe and long-term lung damage. Exposure to high concentrations of these chemicals can be immediately fatal in some cases. Smaller exposures, on the other hand, can result in smaller injuries that can become chronic or cumulative.
Fatalities – Each year, offshore workers are tragically killed in accidents along the United States East Coast. If you have lost a loved one as a result of an accident, please contact us.