If you were injured while working at the Port of South Louisiana or while working on a vessel that visited the port, it is important to consider what right you have to seek compensation. An offshore injury lawyer can provide you with the helpful information you need to make the right choice about your maritime claim, whatever it may entail.
As Louisiana maritime attorneys, Arnold & Itkin LLP has all the qualities you should look for in your legal counsel. We have helped hundreds of seamen and their families, recovering multi-million dollar verdicts and settlements. In all, we have recovered billions of dollars. Whether you have a claim involving a deck accident on a barge or an explosion on an offshore oil platform, one of our lawyers may be able to provide you with the guidance and support you need. We can handle maritime claims under the Jones Act, Longshore and Harbor Workers' Compensation Act, Death on the High Seas Act and general maritime law. We can also handle personal injury and wrongful death claims, and can therefore determine whether you have grounds for a case under these areas of law as well.
The Port of South Louisiana is the largest tonnage port district in the western hemisphere, stretching across 54 miles along the Mississippi river. Every year, more than 55,000 barges and 4,000 oceangoing vessels visit the Port of South Louisiana, weighing in at an annual tonnage of 246 million tons.
Louisiana's colorful history includes government under 10 different flags since 1541, including Spain, France and Great Britain. In 1803, Louisiana joined the United States. The federal government recognized Louisiana's importance by sending Thomas Jefferson and James Monroe to negotiate the Louisiana Purchase with Napoleon.
The United States ultimately purchased Louisiana for $11,250,000, adding a vital geographic position at the mouth of the Mississippi River to sail U.S. vessels bound for the Atlantic coast and Europe down the Mississippi River. Louisiana's maritime assets were, and are, vitally important to the United States.
Louisiana is in the extreme southern region of the United States. The lower part of Louisiana is defined by the Gulf of Mexico and the Mississippi River. The lower half of Louisiana consists primarily of major port cities, swamps, coastal marshlands, beaches and barrier islands, while the northern portion is fertile land, prairie and woodlands.
Louisiana has more navigable waterways than any other state in the nation. The Mississippi River alone runs for 600 miles. The Red River, the Ouachita River and a number of other smaller rivers, streams, and canals combine to form a 4,000-mile system of navigable waterways. Louisiana also has political jurisdiction over the approximately three-mile-wide portion of sub-sea land of the inner continental shelf in the Gulf of Mexico.
Louisiana is rich in petroleum and natural gas deposits, found in abundance in both onshore and offshore waters. Vast petroleum and natural gas reserves are found offshore in the federally-administered Outer Continental Shelf in the Gulf of Mexico. Louisiana also ships in about one-fifth of all foreign crude oil processed in America.
According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the Louisiana Offshore Oil Port is the only port in the United States capable of accommodating deep draft tankers. Oil Seaports and Oil Import Sites include Morgan City, New Orleans, Lake Charles, Baton Rouge, Gramercy and St. Rose.
Louisiana's abundance of ports is due in part to its expansive waterway system. These ports provide a significant and positive economic impact in the form of jobs and tax revenues. The majority of the ports in Louisiana are shallow-draft inland or shallow-draft coastal ports. These shallow draft ports serve as cargo ports, ports for servicing the offshore oil and gas industry, and for commercial fishing in the Gulf of Mexico. The six deep draft ports in Louisiana are used to transfer large quantities of cargo, according to the Port Association of Louisiana.
Every year, the Lower Mississippi River experiences high water. Berth owners at Mississippi River ports check predictions by the National Weather Service Hydrologic Information Service for uncommonly high water as more ships will require helper tugs to maneuver into the berths.
Louisiana's unique and vibrant culture can be seen from the State Capital of Baton Rouge to New Orleans, the state's largest city. Some Louisiana cities have a multicultural, multilingual heritage, with French, Spanish and African influences. The one aspect that remains the same throughout the state is the importance of the waterways and maritime activities. Together, they influence everything from the cuisine to the weather to the state economy.
Louisiana has a humid subtropical climate with long, hot, humid summers and short, pleasantly mild winters. These subtropical characteristics are due in large part to the influence of the Gulf of Mexico, which is less than 200 miles away from any point in Louisiana. Numerous waterways and maritime activity in Louisiana guarantee that its heritage will continue as an important asset to the nation.
Maritime workers may be at risk of experiencing serious or life-threatening injuries while working on barges, tankers, jack-up rigs, oil platforms and other maritime vessels. The hazards they face increase exponentially when a vessel is unseaworthy or a ship owner, captain or crew member is negligent. Negligence may lead to equipment failure due to poor maintenance or operation, falls from elevated platforms and serious deck accidents that may leave a worker suffering from severe injuries.
Though hazards are an inherent part of maritime work, this does not excuse any act of negligence or carelessness on the part of a vessel owner or maritime employer. That is why our lawyers are committed to serving workers at the Port of South Louisiana and throughout the U.S. with their offshore accident claims.
Arnold & Itkin is eager to provide injured workers with the recovery they need and deserve. Contact us for a confidential, free case evaluation where we can determine your next step.
Arnold & Itkin represented nearly a third of the crewmembers injured in the Deepwater Horizon explosion.
Because maritime law is so complex and so complicated, it is crucial that you work with an attorney who has an in-depth understanding of how it works and who has proven themselves in similar cases before.