Platform supply vessels (PSV) are essential to the efficient operation of oil rigs and oil platforms. However, like all offshore jobs, working on a PSV can be dangerous. Every year thousands of workers are injured in PSV accidents. While each accident is unique, the majority of PSV accidents are the result of some type of negligence. If you have been injured in a PSV accident, you may have a right to be compensated for your injuries. You need to find a maritime injury lawyer who will protect your rights and get you the compensation you deserve.
Does Maritime Law Apply?
Many PSV workers assume that risk of injury is just part of the job. However, the truth is many PSV accidents were caused by the negligence of employers and vessel owners. Just because you work on a PSV does not mean that accidents and injuries are acceptable.
Maritime law applies to PSV accidents. If you have been hurt your employer owes you at a minimum maintenance and cure. This means they should pay for your reasonable living expenses and medical costs while you recover. If your employer’s negligence was the causes of the accident, under maritime law and the Jones Act, you may be entitled to much more in damages.
You are not in the best position to know the true cause of your PSV accident. Your employer is unlikely to want to dig too deeply into the accident causes. However, a maritime injury lawyer may be able to help you discover if your employer is liable for the accident because of a failure to meet all of their responsibilities to the crew.
If you don’t get the help of a knowledgeable maritime injury lawyer, you may be missing out on significant amounts of compensation that you are entitled to.
Types and Causes of PSV Accidents
Almost all PSV accidents involve some form of negligence. Some common types of PSV accidents include:
- Collisions with oil platform
- Slip and falls
- Falling tools or cargo
- Fires and explosions
- Chemical leaks
- Equipment malfunction or failure
Some of the ways negligence contributes to, or causes, PSV accidents include:
- Failure to properly train crewmembers
- Failure to maintain vessel or equipment
- Failure to provide adequate warnings or safety equipment
- Failure to perform timely inspections
- Creation of a lax safety attitude and environment
- Proving unseaworthy vessels
Types of Injuries
Some common types of injuries in PSV accidents include:
- Chemical burns
- Inhalation of toxic substances
- Fractured bones
- Strains and sprains
- Ripped or torn ligaments or muscles
- Spinal cord injuries
- Back and neck injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Eye injuries
- Ear injuries
If you have been involved in a PSV accident you need to have a medical exam. Even if your injuries are not serious enough for emergency medical treatment or you do not think you were hurt, you still need a medical exam. You may have hidden injuries. Waiting too long to seek medical help can negatively impact any PSC accident injury claim.
Possible Issues With Claims
PSV accidents are often complicated. Insurance companies often represent employers. Insurance companies do not want to pay out more money than they have to. Every dollar they pay out means one dollar less of profits.
Because of this, many times PSV claims are strongly contested by employers and insurance companies. The company may try and blame you for the accident while making it difficult to completely investigate the role of others in the accident. Another common tactic in PSV accident cases is to argue that you were not really injured as badly as you claim, or that you made your own injuries worse by not following the doctor’s instructions.
Under the Jones Act, you only have a limited time to make a claim for your injuries. The law is also strict about the way you must make your claim. If you fail to make the claim the right way and within the proper time frame, your claim could be denied. You may only have once chance to make a proper claim because of the strict time restrictions.
Making a successful PSV accident claim also requires significant amounts of evidence. You will need to prove with documents and testimony:
- The accident caused your injuries
- How extensive your injuries were
- How the injuries impacted your quality of life
- That it was the negligence of the vessel owner that caused, some, or all of your injuries.
Getting the payment you deserve for your injuries after a PSV accident can be a nightmare if you are trying to do things yourself. You and your family need, and deserve, to have a lawyer in your corner helping to protect your rights and fighting for you to receive the monetary damages you are legally entitled to. We can help connect you with an experienced maritime injury lawyer. Contact us today and we will help you find the right lawyer for your case. Time may be running out for your claim. Contact us today.