When it comes to maintaining and repairing ships, the risks that are inherent with this profession are unique because of the type of work and positions that you are required to perform and hold. The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration states that one of the biggest causes of injury in New York shipyards as well as others across the country comes from the necessity to complete hot work.
Hot work in shipyards included any brazing, cutting or welding jobs. The tools you require to complete these jobs are part of the problem, since they create a constant vibrating motion that can cause you to develop debilitating injuries over time. These can include carpal tunnel syndrome and white finger disease.
Other ways you can be injured while working with hot processes is through burns and shock. Eye injuries are also commonly reported and can range from minor to serious. Over-exposure to the elements and chemicals can also lead to long-term disability.
In addition to these risks, one of the most common causes of shipyard injury is the positioning that you need to hold while performing these tasks. Many times, hot work must be done on a vessel that requires you to bend into and hold uncomfortable positions for a long period of time. This can lead to poor posture, putting pressure on your neck, spine and back. In some cases, lengthy time spent kneeling can also lead to problems with the knees, while continuously holding tight hand grips is also dangerous. This information is solely intended to educate and should not be considered legal advice.