Working on a boat on the river can be a dangerous job. It’s made even more so by the use of worn or faulty equipment, unsafe working conditions and the lack of safe work practices. Accidents can happen quickly on a river when someone slips off a boat deck or when they fall between the boat and a barge.
Many of these rivers are major commercial waterways, like the Mississippi River or the Ohio River. Flowing through multiple states, they carry items from one port to the next. Injuries can happen at one of the terminals, out on the docks or in a port. As tankers, tub boats, barges and other vessels make their way along the rivers, companies send coal, iron, steel, grain, oil and other cargo from their warehouses to their customers.
Working with heavy rigging and chains, as well as handling dangerous and cumbersome cargo on a small and often slippery surface makes these jobs high-risk for injury. Workers of boating companies and other employers may suffer serious injuries from a river accident. The damage sustained is often life-altering and may even be fatal, leaving families bereft and without financial support.
Depending on the circumstances of the accident, the employer may be responsible, which entitles the injured party or the family to compensation. Workers have the right to file a negligence lawsuit against the employer or other companies who are liable.
Thanks to the Jones Act and other maritime laws, workers in these dangerous occupations have protection from irresponsible procedures that increase the risk they face every day out on the river.
If you have been injured or lost a family member to a river accident, you need to speak with an experienced maritime attorney who can represent your best interests in a lawsuit. Contact us today to fight for you.