Caspian Sea Barge Fire Kills 1 Worker, Others Still in Intensive Care
Last Wednesday, an accident in the Caspian Sea injured 14 employees of Italian company Saipem; 7 of them were put into intensive care. All the survivors were transferred to hospitals in Turkey, Italy, France, and the United Kingdom. We've now learned that one week after the accident, one of the workers has succumbed to his injuries at the hospital in France.
While the cause of the accident hasn't been made clear, we do know that a fire ignited aboard the Israfil Huseynov, a vessel owned by Caspian Marine Services and operated by Saipem. The Israfil Huseynov was operating in the Caspian Sea off the coast of Azerbaijan. They were laying pipe for the Shah Deniz II project. Officials stated that the incident was "related to maintenance operations on an item of equipment during pipe-laying activities."
Saipem released a statement about the international nature of the crew, saying the injured included people from Italy, England, Azerbaijan, Romania, Malaysia, and Croatia. Soon after the accident, Saipem promised to return the non-injured employees to their home countries while ensuring the injured employees received specialized medical care. They have followed through on both of these promises.
Vessel Maintenance & Crew Safety
Ultimately, there are two entities responsible for the safety of the crew: the vessel owner and the vessel operator. When equipment is in dangerous condition or liable to cause serious injury if used wrong, then owners and operators need to take the necessary precautions to either replace or maintain that equipment. When they fail, crew members pay for it.
We don't know what happened here, but we do know that fires have a cause, and that cause is usually the result of outdated or poorly-maintained equipment. Whatever the reason for the accident, the people who have been injured or the families who are grieving their dead deserve justice for their losses. We hope they get it.
If you were injured in an offshore accident, call our team to learn your legal and financial options in a free consultation. We've won billions of dollars for our clients to help them rebuild their lives. Dial (888) 346-5024 or contact us online today.