Ammonia Leak Injuries

Many people have heard of ammonia as a combination of nitrogen and hydrogen that can be deadly. At room temperature, it is colorless but has a distinct smell. If exposed to ammonia, an individual can not only have long-lasting side effects but can also die.

Fishing vessels commonly have ammonia leaks because they have large refrigeration systems to store fish products at sea to keep them fresh. When the system begins leaking, it can cause crew injuries, including lung damage, industrial asthma, or other pulmonary conditions.

Ammonia Leak Injury Attorneys | Washington, Alaska, California and Oregon

If you are a member of the crew of a vessel involved in an explosion or fire and sustained an injury, you need the assistance of a practiced maritime attorney. You may feel frustrated and confused by the complexity of the legal process in order to obtain compensation. Thankfully, our maritime and admiralty lawyers at Anderson Carey Williams & Neidzwski, LLP handle a variety of serious vessel explosion claims, including explosions on vessels caused by ammonia leaks, diesel fires, and gas leaks.

We represent injured maritime workers throughout Washington, Alaska, Oregon and California. Let us put our experience to work for you. Call 1 (800) 262-8529 to secure an initial consultation with Anderson Carey Williams & Neidzwski, LLP today.

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Information Center

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Damages for Ammonia Leak Injuries

The damages by someone injured on a vessel due to an ammonia leak may include loss of earnings, medical expenses, and pain and suffering.

Loss Of Earnings

Loss of earnings includes past and future lost earnings, meaning that not only earnings directly lost as a result of missing work to deal with the repercussions of the ammonia leak may be sought, but also earnings someone is reasonably likely to lose as a result of the injuries. Such earnings may result from an inability to perform the same job or receive promotions, pay raises, or bonuses. For example, say that someone is exposed to ammonia vapors, resulting in frostbite requiring amputation. As a result, the individual can no longer work on the fishing vessel, and their new job has a lower salary range. The difference in lifetime salary may be awarded under loss of earnings.

Medical Expenses

Medical expenses also include past and future medical costs. Past medical expenses are generally easy to calculate because medical invoices are itemized. However, future medical expenses are generally not as easy to calculate because it is based on a reasonable expectation of medical professionals of what treatments the victim will need in the future. To prove this in court, it usually requires medical expert witnesses who have reviewed the victim’s case and understand his injuries and what will be required in the future.

Pain And Suffering

Several factors will be used to determine the number of damages that may be rewarded under pain and suffering. To determine pain and suffering, several things may be taken into consideration, including but not limited to the severity of the injuries, the pain involved in the injury, the level of mental anguish that was caused by the injury, and in some cases, even the pain and suffering of family members as a result of the victim’s injury.

For example, someone will receive more damage if they receive lifelong injuries such as lung damage or requires an amputation than if they have something that only requires a few months of treatment.

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Example of Ammonia Leak

A recent example of an ammonia leak on a fishing vessel occurred on April 6, 2022. The Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency received an emergency call reporting an accident abroad on a tanker anchored in international waters off Port Klang. Unfortunately, the ammonia leak led to one death and several critical injuries. Unfortunately, this shows that these accidents still occur and how deadly they can be to the seaman.

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Acts And Statutes Related to Ammonia Leaks

The Jones Act and the Seaman Manslaughter Statues may come into play regarding ammonia leaks.

The Jones Act

The Jones Act was established to provide a seaman with the same or similar workers’ compensation protections as land-based employees receive.

The Seaman Manslaughter Act

The Manslaughter Act provides that a vessel owner can be held liable for its negligence that results in the death of its employees. This is similar to a concept known as vicarious liability for land-based employers. Vicarious liability makes an employer liable for employee negligence if the employer knew of the employee’s Act or should have known of the employee’s actions.

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Additional Resources

Analytical Technology Website – This website provides information on testing for ammonia leaks.

United States Customs and Border Protection – This U.S. Customs and Border Protection website provides more information on the Jones Act.

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Washington, Alaska, California and Oregon Ammonia Leak Injury Lawyers

If you suffered an ammonia leak injury, contact Anderson Carey Williams & Neidzwski, LLP. You may be entitled to compensation. Our experienced maritime injury attorneys have handled a variety of ammonia and other gas exposure cases for injured maritime workers, and can do the same for you.

Anderson Carey Williams & Neidzwski, LLP serve clients in Washington, Alaska, California and Oregon. Call 1 (800) 262-8529 to secure an initial consultation with Anderson Carey Williams & Neidzwski, LLP and have our lawyers pursue the best outcome possible for your case.

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  • The Maritime Law Association of The United States
    The Maritime Law Association of the United States (MLA) was founded in 1899. Its formation was prompted by the organization, some three years earlier, of the International Maritime Committee.
  • Washington State Bar Association
    The Washington State Bar Association operates under the delegated authority of the Washington Supreme Court to license the state's nearly 40,000 lawyers and other legal professionals.
  • Oregon State Bar
    The Oregon State Bar is a government agency in the U.S. state of Oregon. Founded in 1890 as the private Oregon Bar Association, it became a public entity in 1935 that regulates the legal profession.
  • Alaska Bar Association
    The Alaska Bar Association is a mandatory bar association responsible to the Alaska Supreme Court for the admission and discipline process of attorneys for the State of Alaska.