Seaman sues after developing carpal tunnel syndrome

Michelle Massey Aug. 5, 2010, 11:29am

After allegedly developing carpal tunnel syndrome, seaman Anthony Francis filed a Jones Act lawsuit against his employer, Omega Protein, Inc.

The lawsuit was filed July 20 in federal court in New Orleans.

The alleged incident occurred in June 2009 while Francis was employed on the M/V Mermentau as a seaman. He claims he was performing his assigned duties when he was injured after being pulled by a rope on the Mermentau's purse boats.

The defendant is accused of negligence for failing to provide a safe place to work, failing to provide proper equipment and/or personnel to accomplish the job, failing to warn of the dangerous and unsafe conditions of the vessels, and failing to properly man the vessel.

Francis also accuses the defendant of creating and maintaining an unseaworthy vessel, failing to properly maintain and repair the vessel, hiring untrained and unskilled co-employees, retaining employees found to be careless and/or unskilled, and failing to provide competent and adequate supervision.

Francis is seeking damages for medical expenses, pain, mental anguish, disability, maintenance and cure, interest, attorney fees and court costs.

Francis is also asking for an award of punitive damages for the "defendants' willful, wanton, arbitrary, capricious, and/or otherwise without cause failure and/or refusal to pay plaintiff's maintenance and cure benefits."

New Orleans attorneys Lawrence Blake Jones and David C. Whitmore of Scheuermann and Jones are representing the plaintiff.

U.S. District Judge Sarah S. Vance is assigned to the case.

Case No. 2:10cv02036

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