When you’re facing a serious injury from an accident at port, you don’t have to do it alone. The experienced maritime accident lawyers at The Krist Law Firm, P.C., have a decades-long history of helping people in your situation obtain the financial compensation that helps them rebuild their lives after a catastrophic injury. As a dock worker, you have options under the law for getting your medical bills paid and receiving compensation for other losses caused by your accident.
Accidents and Injuries at Port
With 25 miles of port facilities and billions of dollars in annual ship channel economic activity, Houston offers plentiful jobs related to shipping and cargo. The Port of Houston and its cargo and container terminals are the workplaces for thousands of longshoremen, crane operators, stevedores, and other dock workers who perform tough physical labor that helps the city remain one of the busiest ports in the world.
Workers in Houston’s port facilities involved in loading and unloading vessels, repairing or maintaining vessels, shipbuilding, and other types of harbor work are frequently exposed to hazards that can result in serious injury. Longshoremen and other harbor workers may experience accidental injury because of:
Fires or explosions
Heavy equipment accidents involving cranes, forklifts, or other dockside equipment
Heavy objects falling and hitting dock workers
Falls from heights
Falling into water and drowning
Slipping on wet surfaces or tripping over cables or objects
Improper training of workers
Lack of proper safety gear
Lack of enforcement of safety regulations and policies
Improperly maintained equipment
Exposure to hazardous chemicals
A dockside accident can have tragic consequences — and often is preventable if the individual or company responsible for maintaining a safe environment exercises the proper caution. Instead, negligence on the part of a person or company often ends with a longshoreman or harbor worker getting hurt. Common injuries associated with injuries at port include:
Mild, moderate, or severe traumatic brain injuries
Amputated or crushed limbs
Spinal cord damage or paralysis
Slipped, herniated, ruptured, or bulging discs
Torn ligaments and muscle injuries
For a port laborer who relies on his or her paycheck to support a family, a dockside injury can be devastating. In addition to the stress of undergoing medical treatments and a lengthy recovery period, you still have to worry about paying your everyday bills while you’re unable to work.
Laws Covering Harbor Workers
Injured longshoremen, crane operators, stevedores, and other dockside workers in the maritime industry generally have certain rights and protections under the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act. As the title says, this federal statute provides for workers’ compensation benefits for workers who are injured at port as a result of their maritime employment.
Under this law, your employer may be required to pay your medical costs, disability payments, and rehabilitation costs. However, these forms of compensation don’t always make you whole after a serious harbor accident, and you may find that you still have losses that aren’t covered — and that’s where a Houston personal injury lawyer can help.
The Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act also allows you to sue any third party whose negligence caused your injuries. This type of lawsuit may enable you to obtain compensation for past and future:
Loss of earning capacity
This additional financial recovery beyond what workers’ compensation allows can help you and your family restore what you lost because of your accident and preserve your future. This will allow you to better concentrate on your physical recovery and getting your life back to normal.
If you’re the family member of a longshore or harbor worker who was killed because of the negligence of a third party, the law may permit you to file a wrongful death claim and to recover compensation for your loss.
Strong Representation For Your Maritime Accident Claim
A personal injury lawsuit is designed to help when bad things happen to good people through no fault of their own. A successful lawsuit can help ensure that you don’t become overwhelmed by the medical cost of your injury treatment, and that you’re able to continue to provide for your family while you do the hard work of recovering. When someone else is negligent and you get hurt, a lawsuit can help you to be made whole.
However, laws covering injured longshore, dock, or harbor workers are specific and complex. Additionally, maritime industry companies typically have large teams of lawyers ready to defend them against lawsuits and to achieve the lowest possible payout for an accident.
At The Krist Law Firm, P.C., we’re prepared to fight for you and work to get the maximum possible compensation for your case. Our talented Houston personal injury lawyers have the knowledge and resources to pursue your harbor accident case with energy and compassion. We’re committed to helping injured maritime workers receive just compensation and to helping them restore what they lost because of someone else’s negligence.
Types of Cases We Handle
Our firm is ready and equipped to handle a variety of maritime accident cases. We can represent longshore, dock, and harbor workers who have experienced: