Pentwater Man Dies in Barge Accident on Lake Michigan

A 37-year-old man was killed on board a barge on Lake Michigan in a work accident on November 3. The barge P.M. 41 was heading north on the lake around 11:45 a.m. when the U.S. Coast Guard got a call about an employee dying in a conveyor belt accident on deck.

According to the Coast Guard, the vessel was heading from Muskegon to Charlevoix and was south of Ludington, its homeport, when they got the call about the deceased employee. The barge docked in Ludington around 2:30 p.m. after the accident.

According to authorities, it is still unclear what caused the accident. The Michigan State Police Hart Post, Ludington Police Department, Ludington Fire Department and Life EMS all assisted in the investigation, as well as the victims units for both Mason and Oceana county sheriffs’ offices.

At the time of this report, the Mason County medical examiner’s office was beginning its investigation and attempting to find a cause of death.

Employees on tugboats and barges are faced with dangerous situations when employers or co-workers are negligent or the vessel is unseaworthy. Crew members can get hurt from frayed and/or  weak lines parting, from collisions with other boats or objects, from handling heavy lines, from failure to maintain equipment or from a lack of safety procedures and equipment. Most of the serious injuries that occur from these barge accidents can be prevented if employers and other workers follow proper safety precautions, proper procedures, regulations and rules and equipment are properly maintained and repaired and proper equipment is provided.

The nationwide maritime trial lawyers at Latti & Anderson LLP can help injured tug and barge workers and their families obtain compensation, including maintenance and cure from their employers while they heal before heading back to work. If you have suffered an injury while working at sea, it is important to have an expert maritime attorney by your side as soon as possible. Contact us today for a free consultation regarding your case at (800) 392-6072.

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