Algae is a persistent issue on all types of vessels. It can present risks for land-based maritime workers as well. If you are an offshore or maritime worker and you got injured slipping on algae, what are your legal rights? Here’s what you need to know: Why is Algae So Slippery? Algae is a type of marine organism that can grow extremely quickly under the right conditions. Moist and warm environments are ideal for algae, which can “bloom” on an extraordinary scale overnight. However, algae can also grow slowly over time, and as algae builds up on ship decks and other surfaces, it can become very slippery. This is due to a combination of algae’s high water content, durable structure, and smooth texture. In fact, studies have shown that wet algae can even be more slippery than ice—though just barely. While studies have found ice to have a coefficient of friction of 0.017, algae’s coefficient of friction can be as low as 0.015. If you think about how dangerous it can be to walk on ice, you can get an idea of the dangers of walking on algae on the job. Offshore and maritime workers also face a high risk of slipping on algae because most walking surfaces in the maritime work environment are designed to prevent slips and falls. If you are used to walking on a ship deck that is textured to provide traction, you might not be prepared for the slip-and-fall risk of stepping on algae. This […]
The Jones Act is a federal law that governs the liability of vessel operators and marine employers for work-related injuries or the death of an employee.