Boater seeks $1 million from Chevron after hitting unmarked structure

Michelle Massey Mar. 9, 2011, 3:41am


A boater is suing Chevron for more than $1 million after striking an unmarked structure in Highline Pond in Venice.

Sean O'Connell filed suit against Chevron North America Exploration and Production Co. on March 1 in federal court in New Orleans.

The incident occurred on Oct. 22, 2010 as O'Connell was operating a 20-foot shallow sport boat and hit an obscured and unmarked structure. O'Connell was seriously injured in the accident, the suit claims.

The defendant is accused of failing to remove obstructions to navigation in a heavily-traversed navigable waterway, negligently allowing a seriously dangerous and hazardous condition to exist, failing to remove or properly bury its equipment, failing to properly mark the obstruction, failing to warn of the dangerous condition and failing to exercise reasonable care for the safety of O'Connell and the public.

The plaintiff is seeking damages for permanent disability, physical and mental pain and anguish, loss of bodily function, embarrassment, property damages, punitive damages, interest and court costs.

O'Connell is represented by C. Arlen Braud, II and Michelle O. Gallagher of Braud & Gallagher in Mandeville.

U.S. District Judge Jay C. Zainey is assigned to the case.

Case No. 2:11-cv-00483

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