The offshore oil rig industry is vital for the local job market, the United States energy sector, and the national economy. Unfortunately, oil rig workers face many risks while completing their job duties. They commonly sustain severe injuries that keep them out of work while recovering and can require costly medical care. When this happens to you, an experienced maritime injury lawyer could offer solutions.
You have the right to pursue legal action and collect damages if you got hurt while working this dangerous job. Meet with a qualified New Orleans oil rig injury lawyer for more information and to review your options.
The Minimum Oil Rig Safety Requirements
Every oil rig site must meet minimum safety standards or else the employers face penalties, including steep fines. These safety standards include:
- Extensive and ongoing employee training to ensure all workers understand the most recent protocols
- The required safety gear for all employees while working on the vessel or rig
- Adequate lighting and handrails for walkways and steps
- Daily safety inspections
- Proper storage of hazardous material
- Random employee drug and alcohol testing
When employers fail to follow safety protocol and crew members suffer injuries while working on oil rigs, federal statutes allow workers to seek compensation from their employer in a negligence claim.
Hazards and Risks of Working on Oil Rigs
Even in the best circumstances, crew members face many risks while carrying out their duties. Many of the hazards that present severe risks to crew members come about when employers fail to comply with the minimum oil rig safety requirements, including:
- Employers failing to provide sufficient training to workers for equipment operation
- Slips, trips, and falls on the deck or cathead
- Falling objects
- Toxic fumes and explosions
- Pipe tongs and hazardous grating
- Cable breaks
A New Orleans oil rig injury attorney could investigate the incident by requesting records and speaking to witnesses, so as to determine the cause of the accident and identify the responsible parties.
Collecting Compensation After an Oil Rig Injury
Federal and state legislation provides maritime workers, such as those working on oil rigs, the legal right to pursue damages from employers after suffering injuries in an offshore accident. Depending on their unique circumstances, maritime workers, crew, and seamen have different options for taking legal action.
The most well-known statute is the Jones Act, also commonly called the Merchant Marine Act of 1920. According to 46 United States Code of Laws § 688, the Jones Act allows injured oil rig crew members to recover damages from their employers, including medical care, disability, and pain and suffering. A knowledgeable oil rig accident injury lawyer in New Orleans has the training and experience to guide workers through their claim and successfully secure compensation. There may also be an option to file suit directly against the employer, which a lawyer could investigate.
Call a New Orleans Oil Rig Injury Attorney for Help Today
Working on an oil rig is among the most dangerous jobs in the U.S., and much of it is done here in New Orleans. When you sustained injuries while working on a crew, you have options for covering medical care, lost wages, and other expenses while you rest and recover at home. Although you may have access to benefits, there are times when you need to file a personal injury claim against your employer, which can be difficult to do.
Even a minor error could cause significant delays, so call Scott Vicknair, LLC to review your options. Our New Orleans oil rig injury lawyers will provide sound legal advice, represent you in negotiations, and will not charge payment for their services unless you win your case.