Maritime Accidents Articles

Picture of Alicia Patterson

Warmer Temperatures Bring Boating Accidents for Houston Residents

With warm weather returning and summer officially starting, Houstonians are starting to enjoy many of the nearby water recreational opportunities in large numbers. Many take advantage of the numerous lakes in the region for boating, swimming, and leisure. Unfortunately, the benefits of water recreation sometimes come with a cost. Injuries and deaths while boating happen…

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Federal Agencies Underreport Offshore Oil & Gas Deaths, Creating the Illusion of Safety

Recent investigations into the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (“BSEE”) allege that deaths of offshore oil and gas workers frequently go unreported. Specifically, “inconsistent and missing data, as well as loopholes that allow some fatalities to go unreported, make the offshore industry appear safer than it really is.” Investigators allege that at least 30%…

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Liability Insurance Required For “Party Boats”

Like motorists, boat drivers have duties and responsibilities when operating boats in a safe manner. However, boating accidents are still a common occurrence, and damages stemming from these types of accidents can be substantial. Boat owners must make sure that crew members are trained and certified to operate commercial boats. They must also ensure that…

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Abraham Watkins

The Perils of the Seaman Status– 5th Circuit Revised Seaman Status Test

The Fifth Circuit’s recent en banc decision in Sanchez v. Smart Fabricators of Texas, L.L.C., No. 19 20506,2021 WL 1882565 (5th Cir. May 11, 2021) upends 20 years of its own precedent and reformulates the seaman status analysis. The plaintiff in the lawsuit was a welder working on a jack up-rig. Sanchez had been onboard the second of two…

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Abraham Watkins Scores Victory Under New 5th Circuit Maritime Precedent

In Sanchez v. Smart Fabricators, a unanimous, en banc decision of the 5th Circuit upended existing precedent in greatly narrowing the critical threshold issue of who qualifies as a seaman under the Jones Act.  As one of the leading personal injury firms in the nation, and the longest operating in Texas, Abraham Watkins attorneys Benny…

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Zone of Danger: 5th Circuit Leaves Open the Door for Purely Emotional Injury

The availability of emotional injury claims in maritime law is unsettled. As it stands, recovery of purely emotional injuries requires proof of an attendant physical injury—or at least emotional injuries that present with concurrent physical symptoms. But a recent decision from the 5th Circuit potentially expands the scope of cognizable emotional injury claims. In In…

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Abraham Watkins

Maritime Injury: Claims for Purely Emotional Injuries and the Physical Impact Rule

An often overlooked component and independent cause of action in maritime injury claims is infliction of emotional distress. If you have been involved in accident and sustained psychological injury such as substantial distress, anxiety, grief, depression, insomnia, or other psychological symptoms without soft tissue or orthopedic injury, you or maritime employees who witnessed the event…

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