Oil companies and contractors often rely on helicopters to transport them to and from offshore oil and gas rigs. Sadly, these helicopters sometimes crash, causing catastrophic injury or death. The law provides civil actions for damages to workers who are injured in a helicopter crash while on the job. They may seek compensation for their injuries and losses through a personal injury lawsuit. The types of compensation depend on the specific circumstances of the crash and the injuries sustained.
Oil Rig Worker Jones Act Damages
The United States considers offshore oil rig workers as Jones Act maritime workers. The Jones Act provides injured maritime workers with the right to sue their employer for negligence. Under the Jones Act, injured workers can recover damages for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other losses.
Oil Rig Worker State Law Damages
Maritime law does not cover crashes related to shore-based operations. Accordingly, state law provides for compensation to workers. The money damages available to workers and their surviving families in the Gulf States of Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas is similar. State laws provide for recovery of the following damages:
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering
- Medical expenses
- Funeral expenses
- Loss of love and affection caused by death
Additionally, workers may be able to claim workers’ compensation benefits. These benefits cover medical expenses and lost wages.
The NTSB conducts intensive investigations into the cause of helicopter crashes. They primarily investigate and report on whether the crash was due to human error or mechanical failure. Pilot error, manufacturing defect, or maintenance failures remain the primary cause of helicopter accidents.
How to Get Money for Helicopter Accidents
An experienced trial lawyer can get their clients money when helicopter crashes cause injury and death. The lawyer must not only know the applicable law, but also how to present the evidence at trial to win big verdicts. Therefore, hiring a lawyer you can trust is the best way to get fairly compensated for all damages caused when a helicopter crash hurts workers and their families.