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September 14th, 2011

Six People Rescued after California Fishing Vessel Accident

Six crewmembers on a fishing vessel had to be rescued after their fishing boat sank off Catalina Island last week.  According to the Coast Guard, the fishing vessel, the Midnight Star, had 6 members on board, when it sank for unknown reasons near Eagle Rock.

Four fishermen were able to leave the boat in a stiff.  Two of the crewmembers fell into the water, and were later pickup by the skiff.  They were rescued by a Good Samaritan and taken to safety.  All crew members are reported to be safe, and no injuries have been reported. The Coast Guard later dispatched a helicopter and a cutter to check for environmental damage.

There is no information about what might have caused the fishing vessel to sink.  The Marine Response Team and the California Department of Fish and Game have begun investigations into the incident.

Crewmembers on commercial fishing vessels are exposed to serious hazards and dangers every day.  Work on a fishing vessel can be hectic, leaving crewmembers fatigued.  Decks may be slippery, and crew members may be at risk of injuries from the use of dangerous fish processing equipment on the vessel.

Commercial fishing vessel crew members may qualify for compensation under the Jones Act.  The Jones Act requires that a seaman be assigned to a vessel in navigation, and that the seaman contribute to the mission of the vessel.  If a seaman can meet these criteria, he may be eligible for compensation under the Jones Act.  Determining whether you are eligible for recovery of damages under the Jones Act is a matter that is best left to a maritime attorney.

Source: NBC Los Angeles

Schechter, Shaffer & Harris, L.L.P., Accident & Injury Lawyers has represented thousands of seamen, longshoremen, and other maritime workers, and has received outstanding recoveries for clients. SMSH has always been a strong advocate for maritime personal injury victims and the families of those who are killed while working in service of a vessel. Our concern is for the safety of those involved and helping their families find out the whereabouts and conditions of their loved ones. We have obtained multi-million dollar settlements for injured seamen and their families. The team of maritime lawyers at Schechter, Shaffer & Harris, L.L.P.  has over 100 years of combined trial experience.

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