The Port of Houston ranks first in the country for international commerce and is the sixth-largest shipping port in the world. It is the busiest U.S. port in terms of foreign tonnage and second busiest in overall tonnage. Houston is also one of the world’s largest centers for manufacturing petrochemicals and plastics. Houston is an international energy capital, with more than five thousand energy firms doing business in Houston.
Because The Port of Houston is an international shipping hub, Admiralty and Maritime accidents are frequent and often devastating. While the Port itself does an exceptional job handling the traffic, it cannot eliminate human error. The Merman Law Firm has handled a myriad of Admiralty cases, including Jones Act Seamen injured in foreign waters, fatal collisions in the ship channel, and 905(b) claims against shipowners for longshoremen (stevedores) injured by faulty equipment shipboard while loading cargo.
K.P. v. M/V Sea Angel Cause No. 2006-00754-C in the 68th Judicial District Court of Dallas County, Texas
K.P. was a deckhand on the M/V Sea Angel operating out of the Bahamas and owned by two U.S. citizens. Because she was working on a vessel in navigable waters, K.P. was a Jones Act seaman and subject to the rights and protections afforded all U.S. sailors. As the crew attempted to secure to a small dock in rough seas, K.P.’s thumb was severed at the top knuckle as it was crushed between the dock piling and the gunnel of the boat. K.P. immediately sought medical treatment, but ultimately there was little that could be done to repair the damage to her thumb.
Mr. Merman alleged that the boat owners were negligent in the operation of the boat and the training of the staff for rough-sea docking. He also alleged that the boat was unseaworthy by virtue of its crew and operation.
Result: Confidential Settlement for Plaintiff