Maritime cargo transportation is critical to the flow of goods worldwide. Harbor workers and longshoremen are an integral part of the industry and are responsible for loading and offloading the millions of tons of cargo that moves in and out of U.S. ports.
Harbor workers generally learn their trade while putting in the time, and once they have garnered enough experience to become longshoremen, they usually receive a pay increase and are eligible to join the union. Because harbor workers are not usually hired full time, but rather as seasonal workers, it can take years of dedication to reach the status of longshoremen.
The downside to this is that inexperienced workers increase the risks of accidents and injuries for all workers in an area where dangers and hazards abound. Cargo swinging overhead being guided with lines and wires, while other cargo is hauled with winches and cables presents a carnival of entanglement dangers and crush risks. Falling cargo, swinging loads, traffic accidents, worker errors, and equipment malfunctions are all real risks faced every day by the men and women working our ports and harbors.
Common Harbor Accidents and Injuries
Some of the most common injuries are caused by
- Cranes and forklifts
- Traffic collisions
- Slip/trip falls
- Falls into the water
- Winch and guidelines
- Electric shock
- Fires and explosions
- Toxic chemical and hazardous fume exposure
Employees who are injured because of the employer negligence or due to the actions of another worker may be eligible for compensation for their injuries. This is extremely important in cases where the employee suffers a life-changing or permanent injury. While federal laws hold the employer responsible for the medical costs for injuries a worker sustains on the job or in a job-related accident, there are restrictions to where the employee seeks medical treatment and time limits on when the employee can file a claim.
When loading accidents occur, and a worker sustains an injury that will prevent them from working for an extended period, having their medical costs paid by their company might not be enough. They need money to replace what they are losing by not being able to work. That’s where we come in.
If you were injured or a family killed in a maritime terminal accident, speak to us as soon as possible. We have decades of experience in fighting for those employed in the commercial maritime industries, and we stand ready to fight for you. Fill out the form for more information.