No matter the severity of the accident, working with offshore injury lawyers in its aftermath may be a good idea. Their knowledge regarding these specialized cases is priceless during an already stressful and sometimes devastating time. The employee can rest assure that their rights will be protected and appropriate compensation is sought.
The oil and gas industry encompasses a range of companies performing oil exploration, production, drilling, and other oilfield services. Those employed by any one of these companies may find themselves on a variety of work sites miles from land, including but not limited to inland barges, drill ships, floating production systems, semisubmersibles, and platform rigs. Each type of facility comes with its own hazards and risks. It is up to the rig owner to ensure safety is maximized, equipment is maintained, and employees are thoroughly trained in order to evade accidents from occurring.
Despite the precautions that are to be taken, employees are at risk of injury and even death every day. They may face broken bones, fire and chemical burns, hypothermia, asbestos exposure, spinal cord damage, and even drowning. According to a study done by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, maritime workers in the oil and gas industry are seven times more likely to suffer a fatality than those in other industries. From the large pieces of machinery involved to the treacherous weather those on board face, accidents do occur.
The legal expertise that offshore injury lawyers can share is essential from the start. Ship owners and management frequently attempt to place responsibility on the employee. They utilize their own legal team to protect themselves and their bottom line when their focus should be on respecting the rights of those physically harmed on the job. Employees and/or their families must hire their own advocate. An attorney specializing in oil and gas industry cases will ensure the admiralty and maritime laws such as the Jones Act and the Longshore and Harbor Workers Compensation Act do their job. They are in place to protect employees and give them the right to prove negligence on the part of the employer. By establishing fault, qualified maritime workers can be compensated for lost wages, medical expenses, and resulting pain and suffering. The meticulous efforts of a top notch attorney will guarantee that compensation is maximized.
Reputable offshore injury lawyers will cover every aspect of investigating the case. From questioning witnesses and gathering evidence to working closely with industry and medical specialists, the process can be overwhelming. An experienced attorney will tackle each step all the way to the state or even federal court level.
While there are an abundance of licensed legal professionals to choose from, it is imperative that those involved in oil and gas rig accidents know where to turn. They should seek the help of an attorney educated in occupational health and safety as well as specific maritime industry law. No matter the magnitude of the accident, the employee and/or their family must be able to have their rights heard and be adequately compensated for their suffering in the end.