New Orleans Maritime Accident Lawyers
New Orleans is known for its water. With Lake Pontchartrain on one side, Lake Borgne on the other and the Mississippi River right behind, New Orleans residents have loads of options for having fun and working on the water. People love to swim and boat around New Orleans, and water skiing, flyboarding and tubing are all popular area pastimes. The nearby Gulf of Mexico provides jobs for seamen and those on dry land handling cargo and working on ships.
However, recreational and business pursuits on the water come with risks. Maritime and boating accidents happen throughout New Orleans and the surrounding areas. When they do, you need an experienced maritime law firm to represent you.
Navigating Maritime Accidents in New Orleans
In New Orleans, maritime accidents come in two main forms: those affecting recreation seekers and those impacting maritime workers.
1. Recreation Seekers
Recreation on the water can encompass a range of activities. Unfortunately, accidents are not uncommon in the world of water-based fun. The most typical accidents happen during boating trips or while cruising. Causes of these can accidents include:
- Operator errors
- Excessive speed
- Distracted boating
- Inexperienced operators
- Boating under the influence
- Violations of safety regulations
Additionally, New Orleans’s location along the Mississippi River brings numerous cruise ships, offering unforgettable vacations. However, unforeseen events and accidents can disrupt your cruise experience, leaving you frustrated. Some cruise ship mishaps include:
- Foodborne illnesses leading to widespread outbreaks
- Sanitation or food and water quality issues causing gastrointestinal distress
- Insufficient onboard security leading to thefts or assaults
- Slippery floors due to poor cleaning leading to trip-and-fall incidents
- Lack of proper signage, making passengers unaware of potential hazards
- Improper maintenance of the ship resulting in equipment malfunctions
These incidents not only spoil your vacation but can also lead to long-term issues after you return.
2. For Maritime Workers
Apart from recreational accidents, maritime workers can also suffer injuries. These workers are employed on various vessels, including:
- Commercial fishing and diving boats
- Cargo ships
- Offshore oil rigs
Maritime Accident Laws for Workers
For maritime workers, the Jones Act, enacted in 1920, plays a crucial role. Unlike traditional workers’ compensation, this Act requires proving employer negligence as the cause of the injury. It applies to various scenarios, including:
- Use of power tools
- Working and living in confined spaces
- Harsh weather conditions
- Social isolation
Under the Jones Act, you can recover:
- Full wages during your absence from work
- Coverage for medical bills, including hospital and therapy expenses
- Compensation for diminished earning capacity
- Support for disability and the impact on your quality of life
- Compensation for pain and suffering
For workers who don’t go to sea but still work with vessels, the Longshore & Harbor Workers Compensation Act (LHWCA) provides coverage. This act offers protections similar to the Jones Act and covers individuals engaged in maritime employment, including:
- Medical expenses
- Disability benefits, temporary or permanent
- Rehabilitation costs
- Wrongful death benefits in case of fatal accidents
However, there are exceptions, as U.S. government employees and those whose injuries result from intoxication or intentional harm are not eligible for LHWCA benefits.
Contact Our New Orleans Maritime Injury Attorneys Today
Accidents on the water can be unpredictable and have long-lasting consequences. If you’re involved in a maritime accident, you need legal experts who understand the complexities of maritime law. Turn to the experienced team at Irpino, Avin & Hawkins Law Firm. Our New Orleans-based attorneys have helped numerous clients facing maritime accidents, whether they occurred during work or leisure activities.
When you’re injured, concerns about supporting your family and returning to work can be overwhelming. Our maritime injury lawyers provide the support and guidance you need during these challenging times. Contact us today by calling 504-525-1500 or filling out our online contact form. We’re here to assist you on your journey to recovery.