To see a heavy lift ship at work is an impressive thing, and some of them are strong enough to move such massive items as derricks weighing hundreds of tons or even entire oil platforms. Obviously, operating them is not for the faint of heart or the poorly trained, and yet even with a lot of skill or experience, accidents happen. After all, it is a team effort to use a heavy lift ship, and it requires equipment that must be in top condition and maintained properly.
Should an accident occur, it can be due to such things as mechanical or human error, but as with all other types of maritime accidents, there could also be an element of negligence involved too. For example, if any system on board a heavy lift ship is not maintained properly it could be the trigger for a fatal or large-scale accident. This can lead to the injury of crew or even to the deaths of those working the job.
Maritime law stipulates that certain safety standards are followed at every point possible. Should an accident occur, the laws also offer protection to those injured, or to their surviving dependents. This is because the initial set of safety standards are meant to provide workers with as much security as possible, and if even a single standard is ignored, it is an open act of negligence that leads to the need to provide compensation to those who are injured or harmed.
As someone working in the maritime industry, you know your job and the technicalities of your field, but you may not know much about the laws that apply to the maritime industry in general. If you are injured, it is not the time to crack open law books and begin arguing with trained attorneys. Instead, it is the time to get in touch with a qualified maritime lawyer who is already prepared to argue on your behalf.
There are so many questions whenever a heavy lift ship accident occurs, and even the experts argue endlessly about who did what, who was right or wrong, and so on. (Anchortime.com, 2009) You don’t need to get involved in this sort of debate when you have a skilled lawyer. They can dive right in and find out answers to such questions as, “Were workers trained to do their jobs properly?” or, “Was the equipment in use as up to date and functional as it was supposed to be?” There are scores of points that they can clarify in order to get right to the heart of the matter, which is “was negligence the real reason for the accident”?
Remember, even if you think another crewmember is to blame, the real reason could be something that your employer or the vessel owner did or did not do that led to the human error and the accident.
Don’t accept that your work in a high-risk industry should leave you exposed to threats to your health or your life. Certainly, doing the work on any heavy ship is dangerous, and there are incidents in which people have head injuries, slip and fall accidents, and crush injuries all of the time. Each and every one of them could be due to negligence and not just the hazardousness of the work. Speak to a maritime lawyer to begin to determine if any heavy lift ship accident you were involved in was negligent or not. If it is, you are due compensation far beyond the basic maintenance and cure that anyone hurt on the job receives.