Head Injury and Closed Head Injury
Injuries involving some type of blow to the head are among the most common in society. Recent studies suggest nearly 700,000 people in the U.S. suffer traumatic head injuries each year, and between 70,000 and 90,000 are left permanently disabled. Head injuries can range from relatively minor abrasions to the scalp and face to more serious consequences involving damage to the brain.
Those who use the water for work or for play are not immune to the potential dangers of head injuries. Workers who operate on slippery or poorly maintained boat decks, refinery platforms or vessel repair walkways can suffer catastrophic consequences, as one small misstep can lead to a life-changing head trauma. Recreational boaters can suffer a similar fate, as private yachts and cruise ships often fail to maintain safe and secure environments for their patrons.
Many boat-related head injuries are the result of improper safety practices and procedures, and, in a cruel twist of irony, the ones who suffer are those for whom the practices and procedures were created. Head injuries spawned from another’s negligence or incompetence is intolerable, and those who have suffered are advised to contact an experienced and compassionate attorney for information about immediate and comprehensive compensation.
Injuries to the brain most often occur when some sort of physical trauma immediately affects the function and activity of the brain. Brain injuries range in severity from mild (concussions) to severe (coma, paralysis). In some cases, extensive damage to vital brain components has led to death.
Brain injuries sustained while on the water most often are the result of slips and/or falls from slippery surfaces. Boat decks, refinery platforms and ship-building scaffolds are all susceptible to the elements, and as a result, those who work or recreate on those surfaces risk severe injury, or even worse.
Sadly, many brain injuries could have been avoided if proper maintenance and safety practices were maintained. Brain injury victims or their families are encouraged to seek legal guidance from caring and authoritative attorneys well versed in admiralty law and procedures. Many victims are entitled to monetary compensation in accordance with their suffering, and now is the time to act.
Closed Head Injury
A closed head brain injury is the result of trauma to the brain that does not result in a skull fracture. Although the skull has not been damaged, there may be very serious damage to the brain, which can have drastic effects on the victim and their loved ones. Many times, closed head injuries are not accurately diagnosed because the injury is not physically apparent, as is the case with an open head injury.
Closed head injuries that occur on the open water are even more difficult to diagnose, as the symptoms associated with CHI (dizziness, vomiting, tremors, loss of co-ordination) are also attributed to much less serious maladies, such as sea sickness. If left untreated, closed head injuries can have disastrous implications, including brain damage, stroke and, in some cases, death.
In some cases, the severity of the closed head injury could have been limited with proper diagnosis, treatment and recovery time. Unfortunately, those who live and work on the water do not always have the luxury of immediate medical care. As a result, many individuals have suffered undue emotional and physical hardships, some of which were prompted by ineffective action by staff officers, crew or even fellow employees. Do not allow the pain of rehabilitation to prevent you from seeking legal recourse. A caring and qualified lawyer can help recover expenses incurred from the treatment of your injury. If you feel that you or a loved one’s closed head injury may be the result of third party negligence, then it is time to seek immediate and comprehensive compensation.
A concussion occurs when the head sustains a hard blow and the impact jars or shakes the brain inside the skull. The rapid movement interrupts the brain’s normal activities, and in some cases, leads to a brief loss of consciousness. Although there may be cuts or bruises on the head or face, there may be no other signs of a brain injury. The length of unconsciousness may relate to the severity of the concussion. Often victims have no memory of events preceding the injury or immediately after regaining consciousness with worse injuries causing longer periods of amnesia.
Concussions can occur under a variety of circumstances, but most concussion or brain-related injuries that occur while operating, working or playing on board a waterborne vessel are the result of slippery and/or poorly maintained surfaces. While the range in severity varies, individuals aboard cargo vessels, commercial fishing boats cruise ships all are at risk for head-related injuries such as a concussion.
Often times, those who have experienced concussions are forced to miss time at work in order to give the injury ample time to heal. Unfortunately, the costs associated with head-related injury care can be very expensive, and those who work on the water for a living often feel obligated to return to their jobs before having fully recovered from the concussion. It’s important not to take unnecessary chances with any type of head injury, and those who suffered the injury while working aboard a vessel or even vacationing may be entitled to monetary compensation for costs incurred while receiving medical treatment. Contact a qualified and experienced attorney today for more information.
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
Traumatic brain injury is an acquired injury to the brain that is caused by an external physical force and that results in total or partial functional disability or psychosocial impairment. The term applies to open or closed head injuries resulting in mild, moderate or severe impairments in one or more areas, including cognition, language, memory, attention, reasoning, abstract thinking, judgment, problem solving, sensory, perceptual and motor abilities, psychosocial behavior, physical functions, information processing and speech.
Those who work and play on the waterways of the world are vulnerable to the situations and circumstances that lead to traumatic brain injury. Unsafe working conditions on boats, floating refineries and oil platforms can lead to severely debilitating injuries such as TBI. Additionally, vacationers and other recreationalists risk major injury when at sea or on the lake. Minimal safety procedures and precautions have led to countless numbers of injuries, many of which could have been avoided with proper diligence and training by boat crews and officers.