Accident Claims – Falls from Height

On drilling rigs, drillships, tankers, tugboats, and other vessels in the Houston Ship Channel, the Gulf of Mexico, Mississippi River, and other navigable waterways around the world, fall risks present some of the most-prevalent dangers for crewmembers and offshore workers onboard. In particular, falls from heights have the potential to result in severe injuries that can require extensive medical treatment and leave workers unable to do their jobs for weeks, months or even years.

If you were injured in a fall-from-height incident on a vessel, a Houston maritime accident lawyer at Morrow & Sheppard LLP can help you fight for just compensation. Attorneys Nick Morrow and John Sheppard have decades of experience representing clients in complicated legal matters, and they have successfully handled matters involving in excess of $1 billion. In maritime injury claims, experience matters. We put experience on your side.

Fall Risks on Vessels

Many drilling rigs, tankers, and other vessels and platforms have several decks that often have exposed areas where crewmembers and offshore workers who are being transported to and from jobsites can easily be at risk for suffering injuries in a fall. Unguarded stairwells and cargo holds can present risks as well, and when you throw in the constant – often violent – motion of a vessel on the open water, it is not hard to see why falls on crew boats and other vessels are such a common occurrence.

Common Fall-Related Injuries

Falls from heights onboard vessels can result in severe, and in some cases life-changing injuries. Some of the most common fall-related injuries include:

  • Bone Fractures – Including bones in the arms, legs, ankles, wrists, shoulders ribs.
  • Brain Injuries – Including concussions, diffuse anoxal injuries, contusions, hematomas and other traumatic injuries.
  • Facial Injuries – Including severe lacerations, fractures and eye injuries.
  • Soft Tissue Injuries – Including damage to muscles, ligaments and tendons throughout the body.
  • Spinal Cord Injuries – Including herniated discs, fractured vertebrae, dislocations and compression injuries.

These and other fall-related injuries often leave injured offshore workers in the hospital for extended periods of time, racking up medical bills while they are unable to provide for their families. If this sounds familiar, it is time to speak with an experienced attorney.

Know Your Rights: The Jones Act and Maritime Law May Protect You

As someone who has been injured in a fall from height on a vessel, it is important to understand that you have legal rights. For example, under the Jones Act, you may be entitled to “maintenance and cure” benefits from your employer. These are “no-fault” benefits, meaning that your employer must pay regardless of the cause of your injury (with only limited exceptions).

However, maintenance and cure benefits are limited; and, even though they are limited, employers still do not like to pay. So, when you suffer a maritime injury, it is critical that you hire an attorney to help you enforce your rights. The Jones Act also includes provisions that entitle injured maritime workers to seek full compensation, and if you fell because your crew boat was unseaworthy, you may be entitled to compensation from the vessel’s owner as well.

Talk to an Experienced Maritime Attorney About Your Vessel-Related Injury

If you were injured in a fall on a vessel, do not make mistakes that could jeopardize your rights, and do not let your employer take advantage of you. At Morrow & Sheppard LLP, we can help you seek maximum compensation for your fall-related injuries. You can contact us 24/7, so for a free consultation, call (800) 489-2216 or contact us online now.


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