Crystal Clear seaman sues after fourth accident

By Michelle Massey | May 26, 2010

After four different accidents while working aboard the M/V Crystal Clear as an seaman and member of the crew, engineer Daniel Battaglia has filed suit against the vessel's owners for not providing a safe place to work.

Battaglia filed suit against Jewel Marine, Inc. on May 12 in federal court in New Orleans.

According to the lawsuit, the first accident occurred on Feb. 8, 2009 when Battaglia fell down stairs after the vessel unexpectedly hit a fuel dock. He claims he injured his left knee and left foot due to the defendant's alleged negligent operation of the vessel. Battaglia also states the injuries were caused by the incompetence of the vessel's captain.

The second incident occurred on May 3, 2009 when Battaglia contracted a staph infection in his knee. Three weeks later, he claims he was injured when a tank, which was being off-loaded, struck him and smashed his left arm and hand between two tanks.

Battaglia claims the incident was caused by the negligence of an unidentified platform owner and employer of the crane operator.

He claims his employer is negligent for overloading the deck of the vessel and for negligently lowering a load in such a manner as to strike him.

The fourth accident occurred on Nov. 3, 2009 when the vessel was being loaded with a joint spool pipe. Battaglia states the he and another worker were holding the ends of the joint to guide it, when the crane operator let the pipe fall and it hit Battaglia's left foot.

Battaglia is seeking damages for physical pain and mental anguish, loss of wages, loss of earning capacity, medical expenses, physical impairment, loss of household services, loss of enjoyment of life, maintenance, cure benefits, attorney's fees, interest and court costs.

New Orleans attorneys Lawrence Blake Jones, David C. Whitmore and Kristi A. Post of Scheuermann and Jones are representing Battaglia.

U.S. District Judge Stanwood R. Duval, Jr. is assigned to the case.

Case No. 2:10cv01450

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