Maritime companies have been essential components of the global economy for an incredibly long time. As long as organized businesses have existed, and as long as humankind has needed to ply the seas, these businesses have served a number of different needs. Maritime companies engage in a broad range of different activities, including:
There are tens of thousands, perhaps millions, of maritime companies operating on the world’s waterways today. They range from local and regional service providers to some of the largest companies on the planet. For example, Royal Dutch Shell is technically a maritime company, as well as an oil company, and remains one of the most profitable on the planet.
Another example is Parker Drilling Company, which operates barges, drills, and other equipment to assist companies in the oil and gas sector, as well as other industries. Statoil ASA is another maritime company, and an example of a company created by a national government, although it was privatized eventually, and the Norwegian government now controls just over half of the firm’s public shares.
While maritime companies can be engaged in a number of different industries, they are governed by specific laws. Both state and federal maritime law apply to these companies, with specific elements including the Jones Act and the Longshoremen’s Act. The Jones Act was designed to protect seamen from negligence, unseaworthy vessels and more. The Longshoremen’s Act applies to harbor workers and others in the industry working on the shore, docks and around the harbor.
All US states have their own specific maritime law that applies to these types of companies, and the federal government’s maritime law can work in conjunction with state law, or supersede it depending on the situation.
Maritime companies and their employees can suffer any number of accident and incident types, depending on many different factors, ranging from sea conditions to weather, equipment maintenance, and a great deal more. Some examples include the following:
Maritime companies face a number of challenges due to factors within the organizations themselves, and from the environment. These include:
If you or a loved one has been injured working with or for a maritime company, it is essential that you work with an expert maritime attorney who understands this complex area of law and who can help you fight for your rights.