New Orleans Jones Act Attorneys

Personal injury lawyers often help clients who have suffered accidents on land. When someone is injured at sea, however, the legal ramifications can be difficult. That is why it is essential to work with a qualified offshore accident lawyer. If you have been injured in an offshore accident, you need to know the following information.

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What are offshore accidents?

As the name suggests, offshore accidents occur away from land. In some cases, offshore accidents may occur on boats that are at sea. However, offshore accidents can also occur on other floating structures. In particular, this includes all types of oil rigs. Jack-up rigs, oil platforms and more are considered locations where offshore accidents occur.

What are the injuries that can be sustained from offshore accidents?

Given the perilous nature of the water, there are a number of injuries that qualify as offshore accidents.

  • Equipment failure: Offshore jobs involve heavy equipment. If that equipment breaks down or malfunctions, serious injury or even death can result. In some cases, failure is due to insufficient maintenance. Other accidents are caused by equipment with design flaws. The employer is responsible for keeping equipment in good working order.
  • Chemical exposure: In many situations, offshore jobs deal with dangerous materials. That is why safety gear is required and safety protocols must be maintained. Chemical exposure can include inhalation and direct contact. Instances where safety gear malfunctions are also considered for offshore accidents.
  • Fire or explosion: Because vessels and platforms at sea rely on combustible materials to operate, the risk of fire is always prevalent. Fires can be caused by poor ventilation, insufficient storage, and collision.
  • Falling items: Jobs on the water are conducted in a less stable environment, which makes the risk of falling debris higher. In some cases, heavy machinery may not be secured properly, which puts everyone on deck in danger.
  • Exposure: Offshore workers are often exposed to the elements. Severe weather conditions can lead to illness or injury. In hot weather, this includes dehydration and heat stroke. Winter problems can be related to hypothermia.
  • Slip and fall: Because offshore workers are on the water, it is expected that some work surfaces may be slippery. However, the employer must take reasonable safety measures to prevent slips and falls. If the accident is caused by poorly maintained walkways or staircases, legal recourse may be in order.
  • Poor safety and training: Due to the numerous risks associated with offshore jobs, employers are required to provide good safety measures. Moreover, they must adequately train employees to deal with all situations offshore.

What is the Jones Act?

In some cases, offshore accidents are protected via the Jones Act. This is a federal law that applies to maritime commerce. The law requires shipping between ports in the United States to be conducted on vessels that are made and operated by American citizens or permanent residents. For accidents that happen under circumstances not covered by the Jones Act, the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act is in place. This act protects people who are injured on vessels in American waters.

What are your rights after an offshore accident?

If you are injured in an offshore accident, please understand that you have several important rights. You have the right to medical care of your choosing. This means that you do not have to use company-affiliated providers. You are also guaranteed the right to recover without being forced back to work too soon. In cases of negligence by your employer, you also have the right to have your medical bills paid. It is also imperative to know that you are not obligated to speak about the incident. You should not sign any documents from your employer or insurance company until you consult a lawyer.

How can a New Orleans offshore accident lawyer help?

Anyone injured in an offshore accident should contact an offshore accident lawyer immediately. A lawyer can assess your situation and determine if you have legal recourse. A good legal team can make sure you get the compensation and support you deserve. If you have been in an offshore accident, do not delay. Contact a Broussard & Hart New Orleans offshore accident lawyer today.

 

We Also Help Victims of Offshore Accidents in these Areas of Louisiana
Alexandria | Baton Rouge | Lafayette | Lake Charles | Shreveport

Contact Us at 337-439-2450 or fill out the form below.