Most people are exposed to some potential hazards in their workplace each day. However, seamen face a heightened threat of potentially deadly incidents simply because of the nature of the maritime industry.
Falls are a particular source of injury among maritime workers. Injuries resulting from a fall may be minor, but they can also have devastating — even fatal — consequences. Maritime workers are especially at risk of falling overboard, falling from high platforms and falling while in motion.
As a result, it is worth considering the most common reasons why falls can happen.
Safety equipment is lacking
Maritime workers are faced with a greater risk of falling when adequate safety measures are not in place. For example, a surface that has not been coated with non-slip material could potentially result in a fall. Furthermore, a lack of railings on a maritime vessel or platform could result in an overboard fall.
Additionally, those working from great heights should be provided with safety lines, as well as personal floatation devices that assist with the rescue procedure in the event of an accident.
Poorly maintained equipment and working environments
Maritime workers typically depend on the tools and equipment that they have close to hand. Tools and equipment that are not functioning properly can significantly increase the chances of an accident.
The safety of the working environment is also an issue. Something as simple as a loose bolt can have disastrous consequences if it causes someone to lose their footing.
Humans are always susceptible to making errors that can lead to disasters. However, appropriate training and certification can significantly reduce the risk of accidents.
Understanding the common causes of maritime falls could help to keep you safe. However, if you have been in an accident it is important to know that legal rights and protections are available.