Maritime accidents are often caused when someone was careless or failed to take certain steps to ensure the safety of workers or passengers. And while accidents may happen, the fact that it was an accident doesn’t mean that someone isn’t at fault. Unfortunately, it can often be difficult to identify the cause of your accident and whether someone was negligent. The Houston maritime accident lawyers at The Krist Law Firm, P.C. have the knowledge and experience to identify negligence and recover the compensation you deserve. If you’ve been injured on the job and don’t know what to do, we can help.
Negligence in Texas Maritime Accidents
Most personal injury claims arise from negligence, which is a failure to take reasonable care under particular circumstances. Because negligence is determined in part by the circumstances of the case, the negligence standard in maritime accidents is significantly different from what is applied in other cases. If you’ve been injured at sea or at the Port of Houston, you need a maritime lawyer to help determine whether it was caused by someone else’s negligence.
Carefully Review the Facts
When pursuing a negligence claim in Texas, the party with the best command of the facts tends to be successful. As a result, the first thing your lawyer should do is carefully review all of the circumstances surrounding your accident. This will include everything from the mundane details such as the date and time of your accident, the weather conditions, and any items that may be in dispute.
As part of this process, they will interview you at length and ask you to recount as many details as possible. They may also conduct numerous follow-up interviews to clarify or confirm key facts or fill in any gaps. While answering what seems like the same questions numerous times can be annoying, your lawyer is simply trying to make sure they have mastered all of the facts pertinent to your case.
Similarly, your lawyer will interview any witnesses at length. Again, this may require follow-up interviews to confirm important details. This may require issuing subpoenas for any witnesses that do not want to cooperate or hiring expert witnesses to support your claim.
Obtain Any Necessary Documents
In many maritime accidents, there are several documents that may help establish negligence. Your lawyer will obtain these documents and review them carefully in order to determine whether your accident is the result of negligence. These documents can include the following:
- Internal accident reports
- Accident reports filed with the relevant authorities
- Witness statements
- Maintenance records pertaining to the vessel and any heavy equipment
- Ships logs and duty rosters
For example, an internal accident report filed with the corporate entity responsible for the vessel may identify the cause of the accident or other helpful facts. Maintenance records may reflect that the company had failed to ensure that the ship and its equipment were operating safely. The logs may reflect that the ship was undermanned or that workers had been overworked, conditions that could lead to an accident.
Again, obtaining these documents may require your lawyer to file a subpoena or use other means available through the legal process.
Contact Us if You’ve Been Injured in a Maritime Accident
No matter how obvious it may be to you, you have to prove that you were injured as a result of someone else’s negligence. The maritime accident lawyers at The Krist Law Firm, P.C. know how to identify negligence and can help you build your case to get the compensation you deserve.
If you would like to schedule a free consultation, call us at (281) 283-8500 to discuss your case and how we can help.