Boat Accidents and Maritime Laws in Miami

Miami is renowned as the Cruise Capital of the World, attracting global commerce and containerized cargo through PortMiami’s strategic location near the Panama Canal. While this bustling activity contributes to Miami’s economy, it also presents potential risks for accidents and injuries. Working on ships can be perilous due to slippery surfaces, low clearances, and unstable heavy equipment that can shift unexpectedly. Ship captains and owners have a responsibility to ensure the safety of passengers and crew, implementing reasonable safety measures. However, when accidents occur due to negligence, our experienced Miami boat accidents lawyer at Garrity Traina is here to help victims seek compensation for their injuries.

Special Laws Protecting Maritime Workers

When maritime workers sustain injuries on the job, the legal framework differs from typical workplace accidents. While most employees can receive workers’ compensation benefits or pursue claims against negligent parties, maritime workers follow unique laws and procedures. Under the Jones Act, a federal law, injured maritime workers can seek benefits. However, unlike Florida workers’ compensation, maritime workers must prove negligence on the part of the shipowner, captain, or crew member. This requirement makes pursuing a claim without legal assistance considerably more challenging. The Jones Act covers sailors, seamen, and longshoremen who spend at least 30% of their time serving on navigable waters. Various vessels fall under the Jones Act’s jurisdiction, including barges, tugs, fishing vessels, tour boats, ferries, and cruise ships.

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In cases concerning commercial boats, workers can sue the boat owners without having to prove negligence if the vessel does not meet the standard for seaworthiness. Insufficient or missing safety and lifesaving equipment, failure to comply with safety regulations, and various other factors can demonstrate a lack of seaworthiness.

Dockworkers and harbor workers may also have a type of workers’ compensation claim under the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act, which covers maritime occupations such as ship-builders and ship-breakers.

At Garrity Traina, our Miami-based law office boasts in-depth knowledge of the laws affecting maritime workers. We can guide you through the various legal avenues available to pursue compensation for on-the-job injuries.

Ensuring Safety and Well-Being for Cruise Ship Guests

For many people, going on a cruise is the vacation of a lifetime, often involving a significant financial investment. Cruise lines charge substantial fees and give the impression that they will take care of every need. However, in reality, your personal health and safety are not always prioritized. Slip-and-fall accidents on slippery or overcrowded decks with unsecured equipment are common occurrences, causing injuries to cruise ship guests. Improper cleaning and sanitization in kitchens, cabins, and common areas can lead to food poisoning and outbreaks of other illnesses. Additionally, low doorways, ceilings, unmarked inclines throughout the ship, as well as gangplanks during boarding and disembarking, pose dangers for unsuspecting guests. At Garrity Traina, we fearlessly take on major cruise lines and fight for justice when guests suffer injuries due to crew negligence or unsafe premises.

Seeking Legal Assistance from Experienced Miami Maritime Lawyers

If you have been injured in a maritime accident, whether as an employee or a passenger, rely on our skilled Miami maritime accidents lawyers to vigorously pursue your case and strive for the maximum compensation you deserve. Contact Garrity Traina at 305-423-3800 for a free consultation regarding your potential claims.

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