Barge Cleaning Can Cause Serious Maritime Injuries

Three Dangers of Barge Cleaning That Could Result in Serious Injury

Paul Hofmann
Specializes in personal injury, with emphasis on maritime, railroad and construction worker tort claims

Before the barge can leave the Port of New York and New Jersey on its next voyage, it must be cleaned and readied for different cargo. This cleaning process is not the same as cleaning a commercial fishing boat or tug boat—it is more dangerous.

Three Risks of Barge Cleaning

Whether your work requires you to clean a barge or you love someone who does this type of work, it is important for you to know the risks. According to the Occupational Health and Safety Administration ( OSHA) some of the dangers of barge cleaning include:

  • Fires or explosions. Hazardous materials can explode or cause a fire more easily than other types of materials. It is a serious, potentially fatal risk that all barge cleaners should know about.
  • Chemical exposure. Chemicals can be dangerous if you breathe them in or if they come in contact with your skin or eyes.
  • Working in a confined space. While this risk is arguably less serious than the two risks mentioned above, working in a confined space can result in musculoskeletal injuries or other harm, and leaves less space to maneuver out of dangerous situations.

Of course, there are also other risks involved, and you need to know how to protect yourself if you are injured in any way.

Know Your Rights

If you have been hurt while cleaning a barge in the Port of New York and New Jersey then you need to know your rights. There are certain federal maritime laws that may apply to you and that could help you get the recovery that you deserve for your injuries. These laws are different than New York or New Jersey workers’ compensation laws, and it is important that you are aware of them.

Accordingly, we encourage you to read our FREE publication, The Legal Rights Of Injured Seamen, Dockbuilders, Dredgemen And Other Commercial Mariners: Ten Important Questions Answered , and to start a Live Chat on our website now to get your questions answered.