Longshoremen Accidents and Injuries
Longshoremen are in a environment where a great deal work is done in a little time; all of which involves very large vessels and large containers at the Port of Charleston and other SC ports. Docking a freighter ship used to take more than 3 hours. The development of a rope capable of replacing chains and other technological advances has reduced that time to less than an hour. Ships can carry exponentially more cargo than planes, so it remains an important vehicle to moving goods around the world despite the inherent risk of injury to those working in the shipping industry. Loading and unloading of large objects combined with the slippery docks and ship decks leads too frequently to serious injury and death.
Injured Longshoremen at the Port of Charleston
The Port of Charleston is the 4th busiest port in the nation with the deepest water in the Southeast. Charleston Harbor is home to the deepest channels in the region and regularly handles 8,400-TEU vessels drafting up to 48 feet.
Once a vessel ties up at the dock, Charleston’s operational team – known as the globe’s ‘pros of productivity’ – go to work and deliver standard-shattering crane production, averaging 41 moves per hour per crane cross the entire port. Furthermore, truck turn times remain 21 minutes per gate mission on average.
All longshoremen risk injury at work, but The Port of Charleston does present additional risk due to the size and scope of operations. Workers know the dangerous when they accept these jobs. South Carolina workers’ compensation laws help ensure they will be compensated for injuries in this dangerous work-place.
Frequent Longshoremen Injuries
Those not accustomed to what is needed to dock and unload a freighter would describe it as chaotic.
Imagine the MSC BRUXELLES docking at the Wando Welch Terminal. This vessel is a 109,000-ton ship, and is more than 1,100 feet long and 150 feet wide. It can carry the equivalent of nearly 9,200 twenty-foot long shipping containers and has a maximum depth of 49 feet. When Longshoremen and dock workers get hurt, it may result in permanent disability or death.
Workplace injuries occur when cargo is moved, while ship repairs are made, and food, water, and fuel are refilled for the ships. This can result in dangerous situations such as heavy machinery driving to and fro, pools of water collected on the dock, and more. Thus, it is no surprise that dock accidents can and do occur.
A dock worker can suffer the following injuries while on the job:
- Trip and fall injuries from ropes, nets, and anchors
- Injuries from crane malfunction
- Forklift and vehicular injuries
- Boat motor injuries
- Slip and fall injuries
In some cases, accidents on the docks can cause a wrongful death.
South Carolina Workers’ Compensation is designed to pay for injuries occurring at one’s workplace. Those working in the shipping industry may be cover under the Longshore and Harbor Worker’s Compensation Act (“LHWCA”). Injured Longshoremen turn to Charleston workplace injury attorney Walt Hundley when they get hurt at work.
About South Carolina Workers' Compensation
Today, most employers are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance by law. Those suffering workplace injuries will be compensated for the medical costs and lost wages from any injury occurring at work (more)