Seamen sue after collision during dense fog

By Michelle Keahey | Mar 22, 2012

NEW ORLEANS - Two seamen have filed a lawsuit against their employer claiming they were injured when another vessel struck the stern of their vessel.

Arguing that the vessel should not have been operating during dense fog, Brian Barrilleaux and Roger Dufrene filed suit against Eymard Brothers Towing Co. Inc. and Tako Towing Inc. on March 1 in federal court in New Orleans.

The alleged incident took place aboard the M/V Ted J. Eymard Sr. on Feb. 16, 2012.

According to the lawsuit, the plaintiffs' vessel was tied up to a dock while waiting for dense fog to clear and was struck by the M/V Tako Spirit. At the time of the collision, both vessels were operating as part of the CBG Laplace fleet.

The defendants are accused of negligence for failing to operate the M/V Tako Spirit in a reasonable, prudent and seamanlike manner, for failing to properly train or supervise the vessel's crewmen, failing to adequately equip the vessel with proper equipment required to perform certain operations and for operating the M/V Tako Spirit during unfavorable sea and fog conditions in direction contravention of the instructions of the fleet manger.

Barrilleaux and Dufrene are asking for an award of damages of physical pain and suffering, mental pain, suffering and anguish, medical expenses, lost wages, loss of earning capacity, loss of fringe benefits, disfigurement and disability, loss of enjoyment of life, interest, attorney's fees, maintenance and cure, and court costs.

The plaintiffs are represented by Gretna attorney Ronna M. Steele.

U.S. District Judge Helen G. Berrigan is assigned to the case.

Case No. 2:12-cv-00571

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