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The Most Common Offshore Accidents We See


maritime1No maritime cases are the same, but knowing frequent causes of maritime injuries can help you understand if you should call a Lapeze & Johns attorney for more information. Our Maritime Injury Attorneys are well versed in maritime law and have represented hundreds of cases in Texas, Louisiana, and throughout the Gulf Coast. Maritime injuries can be debilitating, and finding aggressive legal representation is the only way to ensure you receive full compensation for your injury.

The following are some common causes of offshore accidents:

  • Bad weather and on-board leaks can lead to slippery deck conditions, increasing the likelihood of slipping and falling.
  • Major and minor boat collisions can cause any number of injuries.
  • Vessel owners who do not invest in current technology can cause problems with the tensile strength of lines and equipment that is difficult or dangerous to service.
  • Human error is the cause of a significant number of maritime injury claims. Staff who are tired or overworked can make mistakes and have difficulty responding during an emergency. Distracted crews are also the cause of injury when they are on the phone or otherwise occupied and not paying attention to the job at hand. Unmet safety regulations can also lead to hazardous working conditions and accidents.

Typical offshore accidents covered by maritime injury law include:

Barges and Tug Boats Accidents

Modern technology has made barges and tug boats faster and more stable than ever. The equipment provides opportunities for slipping, tripping, and falling. More serious accidents with winches and towlines sweeping the deck can leave a seaman with injuries that may have lifelong repercussions. Moving between barges and tug boats can cause serious injury to crew members.

Offshore Drilling Rig Accidents

Heavy machinery, long working hours, and rough sea and weather conditions create an opportunity for many different types of injury. Unfollowed safety regulations are often the cause of rig accidents, and human error is to blame in the majority of offshore rig mishaps.

Equipment Failures

Even under the best circumstances, equipment failures are common in maritime work. Moving parts can injure unprotected limbs and the head. Falling, burns, and electrocution from mechanical failure often cause injury. Being pinned under equipment or loads is another concern.

Deck Accidents

Deck accidents can be caused by slippery conditions on stairs, catwalks, and ladders lead to serious fall injuries. Being struck by cables and moving loads or losing balance and falling through an open hatch can lead to serious head injury. An experienced maritime lawyer can help.

Shallow Drilling “Jack-Up” Rig Accidents

On-board generators can cause fires due to electrical arcing, and corroded machinery parts can cause explosions. An unstable rig can topple over in rough weather conditions, causing multiple injuries.

Inland Accidents

Many of the same hazards present in oceangoing vessels are present for inland boats. Maritime law covers inland waterway accidents, as well.

Industrial Chemical Accidents

Chemical cargo being transported between vessels and industrial chemicals used on the job can pose a threat to respiratory health and cause chemical burns. Some of the effects of chemical exposure will have lifelong ramifications.

Other Accidents

Food poisoning, asbestos exposure, and smoke inhalation can also give rise to maritime injury claims. All food is prepared on oceangoing vessels, and the potential for serving contaminated food is high. Asbestos in older ships and cargo is hard to identify if not directly exposed and is a highly toxic material. Smoke inhalation from fires and equipment malfunctions can lead to long-term respiratory problems.

The potential for accidents is vast in offshore work, and there are more possibilities for injury than what’s listed here. If you have been injured or know someone who has been injured in the Gulf Coast, contact the Gulf Coast Offshore Injury Attorneys at Lapeze & Johns for a free case evaluation. Without the advice of an experienced maritime legal counselor, you may face mounting medical expenses and lifelong injury complications.