Winch, Crane and Sling Injuries

Loading cargo onto ship

Winch, Crane and Sling Accidents

Individuals who earn a living by working on jack up rigs, drill ships, barges and other vessels can suffer serious injuries when a winch, crane sling and cargo lifting accidents occur. The operations that take place on these vessels and structures are inherently dangerous and employers have a duty to make sure that the equipment is safe and in proper working order. Maritime employers also have a duty to provide their crew with proper training so that accidents and injuries can be prevented.

When a maritime employer fails to take the appropriate steps to provide a safe working environment, the employer can be held liable when an employee is hurt. For during crane lifting operations crew members and others can be injured when:

  • Crane operator is poorly trained or unlicensed
  • Load rating of cargo not correctly calculated
  • Improper slings and rigging placement
  • Undersized slings used
  • Lack of one designated signalman / load supervisor
  • Lack of working catch on hook
  • Incorrect load markings
  • Center of gravity not determined in hook placement
  • Failure to conduct test lift to check load and sling placement
  • Lack of Spreader bar used
  • Lifting loads by cranes in high winds or bad weather
  • Failure to clear lifting area
  • Incorrect or undersized winch or crane used

A Marine Injury Lawyer Can Help Prove Your Case

When a maritime employee is injured in a work-related accident, the employee may be able to recover damages similar to those in a traditional negligence lawsuit, including pain and suffering, past and future lost wages, loss of earning capacity, past and future medical expenses and loss of enjoyment of life. However, if you are a seaman who has been hurt in a winch, crane or sling or rigging accident, the level of proof required to win your case is typically much lower than in an ordinary negligence claim. When your marine injury lawyer files a Jones Act negligence lawsuit, you will only need to prove that your employer’s actions played some part in your injuries, no matter how small the part, in order to recover financial damages.

In addition to filing a negligence lawsuit, injured seamen have the right to collect maintenance and cure benefits from their employers. This means that if you have been injured in a maritime operation, your employer will be required to pay for your daily living expenses and compensate you for the medical care necessary to treat your injuries. Similar to state workers’ compensation insurance programs, maintenance and cure benefits are “absolute,” meaning that you have the right to collect these benefits regardless of who may be at fault for your injuries.

Injured? You Need to Act Quickly

If you are a seaman or other maritime worker who has been injured on the job, you should discuss your situation with an attorney as quickly as possible. It is important to understand that these types of actions are governed by strict statutes of limitation. A statute of limitation is the legal deadline for filing your claim. This means that if you fail to take legal action within the statutory deadline, you may lose your legal rights to sue your employer and other parties responsible for your injuries.

The Willis Law Firm is recognized as a national authority in maritime injury cases. We represent crew members and other workers nationwide who have been seriously harmed in all types of maritime operations, including winch, crane, sling and rigging accidents. Our firm understands how the maritime industry operates and we know the lengths employers will go to in order to avoid paying claims. If you have been injured, contact our firm today to schedule a free evaluation of your case: 1-800-468-4878.

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