The first 20 seconds of this video showing the 780-foot cargo ship HORIZON TRADER rocking in the water should give everybody a better idea of the difficulty and risk involved in helicopter medical evacuations from these types of vessels. The US Coast Guard medevaced a 47-year-old man from the HORIZON TRADER approximately 200 miles east of Chesapeake Bay after a ship’s representative reported that the man sustained serious injuries to his chest during a fall. The Coast Guard used an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter and an HC-130 Hercules aircraft in the rescue mission, and took the injured man to Sentara Norfolk General Hospital in Virginia. According to the Baltimore Sun, it was unclear whether rough weather conditions caused the man’s chest injuries.
If this man’s injuries were the result of his employer’s negligence, then he and his family could be entitled to damages under the Jones Act and under general maritime law. Dangerous conditions, failure to provide a safe place to work and failure to warn of known hazards can all be considered negligent conditions in Jones Act claims. The Jones Act provides another financial recovery resource for seamen who are unable to receive workers’ compensation for their job-related injuries. Additionally, the doctrine of unseaworthiness under general maritime law provides financial recovery for seaman.
In any type of fall case, like this one, it is important to examine whether the Employer or owner of the vessel provided proper safety equipment and had proper fall protection surrounding the area to prevent any falls. Failure to provide this can be negligence on behalf of the employer and unseaworthiness of the vessel. Latti & Anderson LLP has obtained several multi-million dollar verdicts and settlements for clients, who have been injured as a result of falls.
Latti & Anderson LLP has been representing injured seamen nationwide in Jones Act claims for over 50 years. You can learn more about container ship accidents by visiting our website, and you can either enter your information in the form located on this page to let our Jones Act attorneys review your case or you can contact our firm at (800) 392-6072 to set up a free consultation.
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Latti & Anderson’s Little Extra: According to the International Maritime Organization, there were 608 casualties aboard cargo ships between 2006 and 2011.