As anyone who works in the maritime industry can tell you, it is without a doubt one of the most dangerous industries to work in. In fact, the Occupational Safety and Hazard Administration, known more commonly as OHSA, has frequently identified this field as one of the most dangerous to workers. In order to combat the attendant risks of working in the maritime field, there are a variety of laws and regulations that govern safety in the industry.
In particular, these laws and regulations are very specific about the safety training that those who work in this field are supposed to receive. Unfortunately, it is often the case that those who run maritime business fail to provide this mandated safety training. When this happens maritime workers fall victim to accidents and suffer injuries, losing their livelihoods and sometimes even more. Thankfully, there are several laws that target businesses who neglect this training, namely the Longshore Harbor and Workers Compensation Act, the Jones Act, and other maritime laws in general.
The nature of maritime work entails a variety of different safety hazards, some of which one might not even think of. Because of this, the training that should be provided to those working in this field should be myriad. Operators should provide training for:
Although many might point the finger at defective machinery for the majority of injuries suffered in the maritime field, the fact is that inadequate training is most often to blame. When workers are not trained on how to do their jobs safely, they put both themselves and those who are working around them at risk. That’s why it’s so vitally important for those that operate businesses in the maritime field to ensure that each and every employee is properly trained in all safety procedures, practices and methods.
If inadequate training is blame for injuries that you’ve suffered while working in the maritime field, then you’re entitled to seek compensation and damages for the injuries that you suffered. Of course, you are entitled to seek compensation for any medical bills that you have to pay in order to treat the injury or injuries suffered. But there is more.
Depending upon the negligence of the business or operator, you may be entitled to seek punitive damages against that party. Additionally, you can also seek damages that cover any lost wages or income that you’ve suffered as a result of the injury itself and your period of rehabilitation. Finally, you can also seek damages for any emotional distress caused as a result of the injury, in addition to damages that make up for your pain and suffering.
Depending upon the circumstances surrounding any given accident and its attendant injuries, multiple parties may be held liable. Of those circumstances though, adequate safety training is one of the most important. Any business or operator that’s found to have provided inadequate training to its employees can and should be found liable for accidents and injuries that result.
Of course, the laws surrounding liability, especially as they pertain to OSHA regulations and others, are distinct from but operate in tandem with laws that govern the maritime industry. For this reason, it’s important you retain the services of a skilled lawyer, one who is knowledgeable and experienced in both sides of the law, if you suffer an injury on a boat or on shore that’s due to inadequate training provided by a maritime employer.