Louisiana Barge Accident Lawyers

Tugboat & Barge Accident Claims in New Orleans & Beyond

The perils associated with working on tugboats and barges have long been recognized. Before 2000, the death toll from barge-related incidents often neared 20 annually, reaching a high of 29 fatalities in 1997. While these figures have since decreased, the inherent risks continue to loom large, impacting not only the injured workers but also their families.

At Clayton, Frugé & Ward, we have extensive experience in handling tugboat and barge-related cases. We understand the multiple elements that contribute to such incidents, ranging from human errors and inadequate training to deficient equipment. Given the high stakes, we are committed to providing the most skilled, experienced legal guidance possible.

Reach out to us at (225) 209-9943for a free consultation to discuss your legal recovery options.

Predominant Causes of Tugboat Mishaps

Tugboat accidents on Louisiana waterways often arise from collisions with multiple types of obstacles, such as docks, coastlines, or sandbars. Another frequent cause is the unsafe transition of crew members from the barge to the dock and vice versa. Adverse deck conditions, whether due to bad weather or leaking hydraulics, can also contribute.

Towlines and winches, crucial for operations, are a hazardous necessity. Their durability is vital but become dangerous when handled poorly or maintained infrequently. Substandard towlines can snap, endangering everyone involved. More advanced and reliable lines exist but are often skipped over by companies aiming to reduce expenses.

Understaffing is another pervasive concern for tugboat operations.

Inadequate crew can result in fatigue and overexertion, creating a breeding ground for serious mistakes. An understaffed vessel is also ill-equipped to manage emergencies, undermining the crew’s ability to respond quickly and effectively.

Common Types of Barge Accidents

Maritime employees on tugboats and barges benefit from protections under federal statutes like the Jones Act, which guarantees their right to work on safe and seaworthy vessels.

Our experience covers a wide spectrum of barge accident cases, such as:

  • Elevated Barges: Typically utilized for drilling oil in shallow water.
  • Transport Barges: Designed to ferry diverse types of dangerous cargo.
  • Hopper Barges: Used to transport bulk items and often used in dredging.
  • Deck Barges: Flat-bottomed vessels used to carry oversized goods.
  • Tank Barges: Built to transport liquid cargo such as oil and chemicals.

Clayton, Frugé & Ward is a prominent Louisiana maritime law firm with a track record of winning more than $1 billion. Our achievements include securing the state’s largest single-injury judgment. Our commitment to assisting workers and their families has garnered significant media attention. We’re the firm you need if you’ve been in a life-changing barge accident.

Don’t compromise your future or well-being, especially if you’ve been harmed due to employer negligence. For those affected by a tugboat or barge mishap, we invite you to contact Clayton, Frugé & Ward at (225) 209-9943.

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