The maritime industry certainly has its perks. Large compensation packages, a life of adventure, and fruitful careers await successful applicants. These things attract young people year after year. However, the industry is also known for its relatively high rates of injuries from accidents.
This fact does not have to scare people away, but it serves as a warning to be extra careful in this line of work. Be aware of the common injuries for maritime workers and how they happen so you can avoid them. We list some of them below:
Slips and Falls
It is inevitable that this type of accident should happen in an environment that is surrounded by water. Wet floors will become slick and stepping on them could be dangerous. There is also a lot of cargo and other things on board that could be knocked out of place; people can step on them without realizing it until it is too late. Those who slip can fall can land on vulnerable areas of their body and might end up with broken bones, traumatic brain injuries, soft tissue damage, and many more.
Some routes take ships to rough seas. Weather can also turn bad at the most unexpected time and storms can wreak havoc on those in its path. Unsecured objects can fall from tables and shelves. Even people can fall overboard if they are working outside when a huge wave hits. Maritime workers will usually know how to swim, but they can still drown in harsh environments. Even if they manage to float or get out of the water, they could suffer from hypothermia or be crushed by large objects.
Chemical and Thermal Burns
Those who work in the engine room are particularly vulnerable to thermal burns because of the heat generated by the machines. Since these are inside confined spaces, the heat can build-up to dangerous levels. Flames and explosions can also occur in this area. Kitchen workers can also succumb to scalding and other heat-related injuries. If there are toxic chemicals on board, workers who are nearby might find themselves suffering from irritation upon contact or inhalation.
Asphyxiation and Poisoning
There are areas in a ship that have poor ventilation. Chemicals in the cargo may also leak toxic fumes into the air. Workers might find it difficult to breathe and may suffer from asphyxia due to lack of oxygen. Help may be delayed because of the complexity of the situation.
For more information about these and other injuries, talk to maritime lawyers Braud and Gallagher.