A Missouri barge worker was recently killed near Cape Girardeau, Missouri. The 67-year old worker was cleaning an empty barge when he fell 20-25 feet into the uncovered rake barge. The man, who had been working with the barge company for three years, died on impact.
Currently, the barge company is investigating the Missouri barge accident. It is believed that an autopsy will uncover additional details relating to the man’s death. No Missouri barge accident lawsuits have been filed at this point.
Depending on the type of information discovered through the Missouri barge accident investigation, this accident may result in a Jones Act claim or wrongful death claim. The Jones Act, is a federal statute that details seamen’s rights, regulates water transport, and more specifically, restricts maritime commerce.
The Jones Act provides remedy for seamen injured through employment when employer negligence can be shown. In the case at hand, it would need to be proven that the decedent’s employer was negligent, which directly caused the injury suffered. The statute states, under 46 U.S.C. 688, et seq.: any sailor/seaman who shall suffer personal injury in the course of his employment may, at his election, maintain an action for damages at law, with the right to trial by jury, and in such action all statutes of the United States modifying or extending the common law right or remedy in cases of personal injury to railway employees shall apply.