When you picture a career in the maritime industry, what kind of job pops into your head? A large container ship? Perhaps a fishing vessel? While these roles do have their own risk for injuries, there is a wide range of offshore occupations also prone to hazards. Just like on land, those workers injured at sea may seek compensation when they are injured at work. Below are just some dangerous careers, and trauma cases, that an offshore injury lawyer may see.
Offshore Oil and Natural Gas Drilling
Oil and natural gas are obviously a lucrative business. Those who work on offshore drilling platforms face some of the highest risks in the offshore industry. In fact, the amount of nonfatal occupational injuries for these miners has been steadily on the rise. Maritime drillers often receive more severe injuries, resulting in a median of 30 missed work days per incident. That amounts to a lot of time and money lost by injured workers.
It’s easy to think all offshore industries have their cargo and personnel needs met by ship. In actuality, many of these businesses rely on aircraft, especially in urgent situations. The ocean is a turbulent place, and even the most experienced pilots can end up having an accident even during the most routine operations. From salt water erosion of imperative parts to difficult visibility and other hazards, it’s no wonder why small aircraft see far more maritime accidents and injuries than large commercial planes.
While a lot of “bottom fishing” is conducted by trawlers, many fishermen work from their own small vessels or even from the shore. This is some labor-intensive work that requires long days and rough conditions, meaning a lot can go wrong very fast. Ground fishermen risk getting entangled in nets, caught by winches, and even drowning. It’s not just the fishers who are in danger either. Laborers (also known as Lumpers) hired to unload catches from ground fishing vessels also face many of the same dangers.
Cooks and Stewards
There are many risks to those who work below deck on any vessels. It may be surprising to discover that cooks and stewards can also seek the services of an offshore injury lawyer when they’re hurt at work too. Trauma received due to malfunctioning equipment, overwork, or illness due to unsanitary conditions is all addressed by the Jones Act, which counts some support staff as seamen. Additionally, it’s important to remember they aren’t always restricted to the galley, so cooks and stewards are also at risk for many of the same injuries as other crew members.
In conclusion, anyone who begins an offshore career should learn their rights and whether or not they are protected by maritime law. It’s important to know what to do, and who to turn to, if the unfortunate does happen on the job.