Charpentier Law Firm, P.A.

Maritime Work Accidents and Falling Overboard

By Steve Charpentier on June 16, 2019

The view from the deck of a boatAccording to numbers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there are more than 3,800 fatal drownings each year; of the numbers, 332 annual deaths are the result of boating-related accidents. Even in non-fatal drownings, 50 percent of those admitted to emergency departments require hospitalization and further medical care. This is why Stephen G. Charpentier takes all kinds of accidents on the water so seriously.

Charpentier Law Firm, P.A. has helped numerous clients in the greater Melbourne, FL area with maritime law and boating accident cases. While many of these lawsuits are linked to recreational boating, there are numerous catastrophic accidents that also involve workers at docks, piers, and on water vessels. We’d like to focus on these work-related maritime injuries.

Causes of Falling Overboard

There are numerous reasons why a worker on a boat, dock, or pier would fall into the water. This may include:

  • Poor footing
  • Slippery floors and surfaces
  • Lack of safety lines
  • Inattentiveness by co-workers
  • Crane arm accidents
  • Rough waters
  • Poor weather

When our Melbourne law firm looks into your case, we will note the cause or causes of your accident and try to determine if negligence was involved.

Potential for Drowning

If a worker is knocked into the water, there is a danger of drowning. This is especially true when workers are knocked unconscious before they fall overboard, or if they suffer a catastrophic injury that prevents them from swimming or floating.

Poor Safety Measures

We noted above that poor worker safety may contribute to a worker falling overboard. This could mean anything from a lack of safety lines and safety nets to poor footing throughout a vessel or maritime worksite.

Dangerous Work Conditions

In addition to having poor safety measures in place, some maritime workers could be subjected to dangerous work conditions. This covers everything from working in bad weather or in rough waters to working without sufficient breaks.

Lack of Maritime Safety Equipment

If a worker is knocked overboard, there should be safety equipment nearby to aid in rescuing the coworker. Ropes, lines, poles, and floatation devices should be available in order to prevent drowning and ensure rapid removal from the water in the event of an accident.

Who Is Liable in These Kinds of Accidents?

If there were dangerous conditions at a worksite, the employer/company could be liable for contributing to or causing a serious accident. Our law firm will note all evidence and witness testimony available to help establish fault in such incidents.

Workers’ Compensation and Death Benefits

In addition to holding employers accountable for causing maritime accidents, our Melbourne law firm can also help injured workers and their loved ones receive the benefits that are due to them. If a workers’ compensation or death benefits claim was rejected, we can aid in the appeals process to help you receive the benefits that you are rightfully owed.

Learn More About Maritime Work Injuries

For more information about you legal options following a serious accident as a worker on water, contact a skilled maritime law and boating accident attorney. You can reach our law firm by phone at (321) 308-8020.

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