Getting on and off a ship causes thousands of injuries every year through different aquatic vessels. There are not that many ways on and off a ship. Crew members and passengers endure injuries on gangways mainly because of negligence. Someone was the cause for your damages. If you are someone who has suffered an accident because of a gangway, you are entitled to file a claim under the maritime law. Our litigators can help you through this process.
Why Do Gangway Accidents Occur?
The most common reason why gangway accidents occurred are due to someone else’s carelessness. These accidents can be grave in nature, but can also be life-threatening. There could be many reasons why someone endures injuries in gangways. They may happen as a result of:
- A lack of lighting
- A failure to advise others of conditions that may be slippery
- A ship that is not well maintained that creates leaks on the gangway
- Crew members not acquiring adequate training
- Lack of slip resistance
- Too many people boarding at same time
- Hazards that lead to people tripping
What Can Happen to You?
Any accident of any type can result in minor injuries, severe ones, and even life-threatening. Because gangways are either high off a surface or water, they usually can be pretty grave. You might fall and hit your head at a tremendous force that can create a concussion and even brain damage, or you can fall in the water and drown. Some injuries that can occur are:
- Neck and back damages
- Injuries to the spinal cord
- Fractures to the bones
- Ligaments being torn
- Brain injuries
These injuries can even lead in a loss of life or disability. Cruise companies need to maintain their ships in top-notch conditions. Crew members and passengers need to be aware of the dangers that can occur to them while boarding a ship. Did you know that gangway accidents are amongst the top 10 most life-threatening to occur on ships? Most of these injuries could be avoided, but sadly still happen.
Real Life Cases Involving a Gateway Accident
A crew member was caught between the gangway and rail while trying to assist in lifting the gangway in a small cargo vessel. The cargo had experienced bad weather that led to damages to the gangway. After the weather cleared, they decided to bring the gateway on board to inspect it. This crew members upper body was crushed and he was immediately taken to the hospital. This led to an investigation. Some things to learn from this case:
- The crewman put himself in a menacing situation
- The risks involved for performing this type of work was not fully analyzed
- More than likely, the gangway was not properly secured
- The cargo ship lacked adequate steps in handling the situation
A 53-year old ship master died after falling from a gangway that was tipped on its side. He drowned despite trying to be saved. He lost his balance on the gangway; he had a .291% alcohol blood level because he had just gotten back from a going away party. Many safety concerns arose from this event. Some things to learn from this case:
- The ship master should have been more careful with consuming so much alcohol
- The ropes were too slack, which caused the ship masters weight to make the gangway tip over
- The hand ropes were not regularly maintained
These are just some stories that led to severe injuries and death involving a gangway. Crew members and passengers need to be aware of what can happen to them. Crew members need to have the sufficient training in recognizing any problems that can happen on a gangway.
Issues That May Come from Gangway Claims
These claims can be hard. Most insurance companies that represent cruise line companies use the tactics of making it seem like it was your own fault that you got injured. That you were one the who was neglectful. They try to put you as the one who could have avoided your injury if you paid more attention to what you were doing. They do not want the cruise line companies to take any fault in the matter, although, most of the time it is the cruise lines negligence that caused the injuries.
Another defense they use is stating how they could have not known about the cause of the injury. An example would be someone who was hurt from slipping on the gateway due to a spill of any kind. These insurance companies will say that it would have been impossible for anyone of their crew to have seen the spill because it was something that just took place. That if they would have known there was a spill, they would have immediately cleaned it up.
Insurance companies are very sneaky, and will never want to let you win. This is why you require a personal injury attorney with a great comprehension of the operation of ships, negligence and recklessness, and insurance company tactics. Taking chances may be devastating to your case. You need to contact one of our personnel today. We know how to proceed with gangway claims.
At Our Personal Injury Firm in Florida
In our law firm Percy Martinez Personal Injury, our accomplishments in having helped a victim of a gangway accident brings us great pride. People who have expressed negligence and caused someone’s suffering need to pay. You don’t have to do this alone. Please, visit us at 2655 Le Jeune Road #504 Miami, Fl, 33134., or call (305)529-0001
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