Shipyard Worker Killed in Galveston Backhoe Accident

The Galveston County Daily News reported on November 6, 2012, that a 40-year-old contract employee was killed while operating a backhoe from outside the cab at Southwest Shipyard, L.P. on Pelican Island (seen in this video). John Florence of the Galveston County Medical Examiner’s Office told the Daily News that the crew was digging a hole on a project at the time of the accident, and James May died when he became pinned by the boom. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Florence told the Daily News that the pedal controlling the boom is capable of being maneuvered even when the operator is outside the cab, and May was standing behind the backhoe when he went to move the boom. “It swung around and [pinned] him between the back support leg and the boom,” Florence told the Daily News. “Another worker pushed the other pedal and freed him.”

The website for Southwest Shipyard notes that the company has received Excellence in Safety Awards from the Shipbuilders Council of America each of the past two years. Longshoremen, dockworkers and other harbor workers who sustain serious injuries while doing construction on the waterfront may be entitled to compensation under the Longshore Act, and families could be entitled to benefits in cases of wrongful death.

Latti & Anderson LLP has been representing workers injured at sea and on land as well as for the families of those killed for more than 50 years, and the verdicts and settlements we have secured for clients includes a $3.4 million verdict for a man who became a paraplegic while working in a shipyard in Tampa, Florida. We have additional information about shipyard, dock and pier accidents available on our website. You can contact our firm at (800) 392-6072 or use the form on this page to have our Boston maritime trial lawyers review your case if you or a loved one has been injured in a maritime environment.

Latti & Anderson LLP – Boston maritime attorneys