Lawsuit Filed After Offshore Vessel Crew Member Injured

by | Feb 18, 2021 | Firm News, Maritime Law, Personal Injury

Spagnoletti Law Firm recently filed suit on behalf of a Jones Act seaman who was injured while working on the Robin, an offshore supply vessel.  During the incident, our client was ordered by the vessel’s captain to tie off the boat at C-Port 2 terminal located in Port Fourchon, Louisiana. After securing the vessel to the bit located on the stern of the vessel, Plaintiff proceeded to the bit at the bow. The bit was broken, so Plaintiff was instructed to manually tie-off by wrapping the line around the partial bit on the dock, and throwing the line onto the boat. In order to do so, Plaintiff was required to stand on a walkway attached to the dock, located between the dock and the vessel. When Plaintiff attempted to throw the line to a fellow rigger standing on the vessel, he fell due to the poor condition of the walkway, resulting in significant injuries.

The lawsuit also brings claims against Edison Chouest Offshore, Galliano Marine Service, Offshore Service Vessels, and Benchmark Marine Services.  The lawsuit alleges that the Defendants provided an unseaworthy vessel, and were negligent in:

(a) failing to provide proper and adequate equipment to perform the job;
(b) failing to maintain the vessel and her appurtenances and/or equipment in a safe and reasonable state of repair;
(c) failing to take reasonable precautions for Plaintiff’s safety;
(d) failing to provide Plaintiff with a reasonably safe place to work, including failing to provide proper equipment and sufficient crew; and
(e) other acts of negligence and/or omissions to be shown at trial herein.

The lawsuit also seeks the payment of maintenance and cure benefits:

Plaintiff would show that on the above mentioned date, he was injured while in the service of Defendants’ vessel. As a result, Defendants had, and continue to have, a non-delegable duty to provide Plaintiff with the benefits of maintenance and cure. Plaintiff would show that he has not reached maximum medical improvement and that Defendants’ duties therefore continue. Defendants’ have breached their absolute duty by denying payment of maintenance and cure and/or have unreasonably delayed said payments. As a result of Defendants’ failure to pay and/or delay in paying the benefits of maintenance and cure, Plaintiff has suffered further injuries and damages, for which he now sues. Plaintiff would further show that Defendants’ failure to provide the benefits of maintenance and cure was not only unreasonable, but was arbitrary and capricious, or wilful, callous and persistent, and, as a result thereof, Plaintiff is entitled to an award of damages for aggravation of his condition caused by Defendants’ failure, as well as attorney’s fees, and punitive damages, for which he now sues, in addition to all other relief sought.

The injured Plaintiff is represented by Marcus R. Spagnoletti and Eric J. Rhine.

It can be dangerous to work in any industry when safety considerations are not taken seriously.  This is especially so when working on a large ship. Safe maritime companies must ensure that their ships do not put the lives of their passengers or workers at risk.  Safe maritime companies must be proactive and take preventative measures, including regular maintenance and repairs, as well as ensuring its crew members are adequately trained.

Slip and falls are a known risk on an offshore platform or on a vessel.  These risks must be taken into account before life-altering accidents occur.  Preventative maintenance to the stairs could have prevented the injuries sustained by this worker, by ensuring adequate non-skid capabilities on the stairs.  Safe maritime companies must take safety seriously, and understand that failing to do so can result in tragedy.

Our attorneys have extensive experience in maritime injury and wrongful death litigation in courts across the country and the skills needed to represent the families of loved ones who have lost their lives as a result of the negligence of another party, or been seriously injured.  We have handled numerous cases involving injuries that occurred on offshore supply vessels.  The experienced offshore accident attorneys at Spagnoletti Law Firm can help you understand your rights if you or a loved one was a victim of an offshore accident.  Please contact us online or call 713-804-9306 or to learn more about your legal rights.