Seaman Injured During Testing for Crane Lift

Arturo L Fernandez was a 56-year-old seaman and engineer. One day he was working aboard a pipe-laying derrick vessel. He was testing to prove the lifting capabilities of a crane on the vessel.

At the time, pad eyes had been placed on a test barge to provide adequthe right balance for the test.

A pad eye is a device that a line runs through, or provides an attachment point. It usually is bolted or welded to the deck or hull of a boat.

At the same time, the boat had equalizer blcoks to connect the pad eyes on the lift barge to the vessel’s crane.

After the barge was lifted twice successfully, it was lifted a third time and held in the air for several minutes. Unfortunately, that is when the two equalizer blocks broke, and pushed debris to spread over an open area.

Fernandez’s left hand and right leg were hit by the flying debris. As a result, he broke his femur, requiring placement of the plates and fixation screws. This is lead to a spinal injury.

Fernandez suffered nerve damage which forced him to undergo several hand surgeries. He also had to get his left pinky finger amputated.

His medical expenses totaled approximately $250,000 and he now is unable to work and earn his $100,000 salary.

Fernandez sued Holloway-Houston, claiming the company had a flawed design, and failing to test the equalizer blocks properly;warn Fernandez’s employer that the blocks had not been tested in the field, or supervise the test lift.

Fernandez settled with the company for a confidential ammount. The court also awarded him $1.92 million.

Source: Fernandez v. Holloway – Houston, Inc.

By: South Carolina Workers Comp Attorney Pete Strom

The Workers Compensation Lawyers at The Strom Law Firm, LLC aggressively fight to secure compensation for workplace injuries.
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South Carolina work injury laws at a glance:

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What qualifies as a work injury or work accident?
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