Physical labor and back injuries in the maritime industry 

On Behalf of | Aug 30, 2023 | Commercial Seamen |

When people think of maritime injuries, they often think of things that are unique to working on a ship. They imagine workers falling overboard, getting hypothermia or being lost at sea when the ship goes down.

Of course, these types of events do happen, and it’s important to take them seriously and understand what legal steps to take if they occur. But it’s also wise to note that working on a ship can be very physically demanding. In fact, physical strength is often considered to be essential because there’s just no avoiding this type of work. That also means that injuries are quite possible.

Physical jobs workers have to perform

Working on a ship can be very different from one part of the industry to another, such as the difference between working on an ore freighter versus a cruise ship. But they could both come with physical tasks, such as:

  • Loading and unloading the ship 
  • Operating heavy machinery 
  • Lifting heavy equipment or supplies 
  • Moving carts and dollies 
  • Doing general maintenance 
  • Moving pallets of food 
  • Responding in an emergency 
  • Doing demolition work or drilling

Workers could suffer all manner of injuries without a catastrophic event like the ship capsizing or being caught in a storm. A worker may simply be attempting to move equipment onto the ship, performing a heavy lift by themselves, when they suffer a back injury that is going to lead to lasting pain and discomfort. It could even make it impossible for them to work again. For reasons like these and many more, workers always need to know exactly what legal rights they have after an injury.