Brown Water – Tugs/Tows
Have you been hurt while working on a barge or boat while on an inland waterway, river or canal? If so, you may be entitled to money and medical care from the owner of the barge or boat as well as from your employer. Don’t settle for less than you deserve. We represent injured workers, who have been employed on barges and boats, longshoreman and fishermen, across the United States. While our principle office is in Houston, Texas, a leading maritime city and port, we represent injured workers who live throughout the United States.
The work on barges and boats is dangerous work, and injuries do not just happen. They usually happen because someone is at fault. Most often, injuries happen because the owners of the barges or boats failed to make sure you had the tools necessary to perform your job safely, failed to provide the proper training, or failed to provide you with a safe workplace. As a maritime worker, you are entitled to be provided a safe workplace. A safe workplace includes proper training for both you and all of your co-workers. A safe workplace means that the equipment you are given to perform your job is the right equipment for the job. A safe workplace is one that does not have slipping hazards or tripping hazards, and one where the floors and decks are clear and well lit, and not icy, oily, greasy or slick. A safe workplace is one where you are not required to take shortcuts just to save a dollar. A safe workplace is one where the company cares more about your safety than it does about the bottom line.
Injuries which happen on barges and boats are not just “a part of the job”. These injuries can and should have been prevented by your employer. There are many times when the company is pushing the boat and the captain to act in ways that are unsafe. Many times, the proper equipment is not available because the cost of that equipment is not in a budget. Equipment is not maintained as it should be because maintenance takes time and costs money. All of these actions can cause injuries to the workers on the barge or boat.
If you have been injured while working on a barge or boat, on the inland waterways, rivers and canals, you may be entitled to benefits under the Jones Act. Workers working on barges and boats have the right to seek compensation for injuries they receive which were caused by negligence or an unseaworthy condition. This negligence or unseaworthy condition can be something caused by the negligence of a fellow employee, by the company or its policies, or by the condition of the barge, boat or the equipment onboard.
As a worker on a barge or boat, you are likely a Jones Act Seaman. As a Jones Act Seaman, you are not covered by any workers compensation law. Instead, the Jones Act is a federal law that allows you to claim compensation from your employer, for injuries you may suffer, including maintenance and cure and medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering and other damages. Because the Jones Act is not workers compensation, you, as the injured worker, need to bring a claim, and show proof of negligence or unseaworthiness in order to recover the benefits available to you as a Jones Act Seaman.
Maritime injury claims are complex claims, and you should talk to an experienced attorney who can help you navigate the stormy waters of Jones Act claims. Our lawyers have decades of experience in handling personal injury claims and know the laws and regulations that govern Jones Act claims. We represent injured workers throughout the United States, and are ready to assist you in ensuring your claim is pursued in a way that maximizes your recovery.