How Do Catastrophic Maritime Injuries Occur?

| Jan 11, 2021 | Maritime Law |

Maritime work can be a consistent and well-paying career for many workers, but this compensation sometimes comes with a price. Maritime work, by the nature of its setting, is inherently dangerous. Shipping vessels, dockworkers and oil industry workers may be subjected to harsh weather, volatile seas and dangerous equipment. This confluence of factors means that catastrophic injury is, unfortunately, a common occurrence. 

How catastrophic injuries occur

A catastrophic injury can come in many forms. Often the extreme nature of maritime injuries means that multiple injuries can occur in one incident. These are some of the conditions in which maritime workers are hurt on the job:

Failure to provide safety gear: Employers are required to provide safety equipment for workers. This equipment can include helmets, machinery safeguards, railings, fire extinguishers and eyewash stations.

Secured storage: Given the dynamic nature of oceans and waterways, heavy cargo needs to be stored properly and secured against movement. Crushing injuries are common on shipping vessels where active seas can cause shifts and dislodged cargo. 

Cargo lifts and winches: Lifting/moving machinery and cargo can present crushing hazards as well as head injuries. 

Falling and impacts: Water creates slippery conditions that may be difficult to travel across an area without traction pads. Ships often need other friction applications in place with railings and safeguards to prevent falling injuries. 

Understanding how negligence works

Given the already hazardous conditions in maritime, these conditions may be amplified by the negligence of other works, managers and employers. Safety protocols and personal protective equipment is so vital to maintaining the health and well-being of workers. If you think that someone’s negligence led to your injuries, you need to pursue your options for fair compensation.