Working on an offshore oil rig leaves you far more likely to suffer a serious injury while performing your work duties. As such, you may be able to obtain financial support through the Longshore and Harbor Worker’s Compensation Act (LHWCA), which is similar to statewide workers compensation benefits.
This is because those who work on offshore oil rigs are considered to be a type of maritime employee and are therefore protected under federal law. Below, we go into further detail about how oil rig accidents occur and the benefits you can collect if your claim is approved under the LHWCA.
How Oil Rig Accidents Happen
There are several different ways an accident can occur on or around an oil rig. More often than not, accidents involve heavy objects falling and striking workers or machinery mishaps, including malfunctions and operator errors. Traumatic brain damage, amputations, spinal cord injuries, and other severe injuries are often seen in these kinds of accidents.
In addition to accidents caused by oil rig equipment, exposure to toxic chemicals and explosions are also quite common on oil rigs. These can result in the development of chronic illnesses and severe burns, which are sure to keep the injured employee out of work.
You may be surprised to learn that one of the most frequently seen types of oil rig accidents are those involving transportation to and from the oil rig. When traveling by air or water, the planes and boats can be damaged due to a mechanical malfunction or dangerous weather conditions.
FInally, due to the extremely hard labor that offshore oil rig workers endure on a day-to-day basis, suffering back injuries, repetitive stress injuries, and exhaustion are the norm for dedicated oil rig workers.
Protecting Maritime Workers
As previously stated, oil rig workers are considered maritime employees, which means they are protected under federal law in the event of an on-the-job injury. Since oil rigs are not considered vessels or navigable, oil rig workers are not considered seamen, meaning they will need to file a claim for benefits under the LHWCA rather than the Jones Act.
Under the LHWCA, oil rig employees or their families are entitled to disability benefits, medical expense coverage, job training, and death benefits when they are injured or killed while at work.
Of course, some workers will not be in need of some of these benefits. For instance, if you are able to return to work as an offshore oil rig worker, you won’t be in need of vocational training. Similarly, if you didn’t succumb to your injuries, then your family won’t be in need of death benefits.
Reach Out to an Offshore Oil Rig Accident Attorney
If you have been involved in any of the aforementioned types of oil rig accidents or have otherwise been injured while working on a rig, consult with an experienced offshore oil rig accident lawyer at the Law Office of Braud & Gallagher. You can contact us through the secure submission below or by calling our firm at 1-800-256-5674.