Barge worker sues employer over workplace injuries

By The Louisiana Record | Apr 7, 2015

A Calcasieu Parish barge worker has sued a Jefferson Parish business enterprise, alleging negligence.

Jedediah L. Higginbotham filed a lawsuit March 23 in U.S. District Court Eastern District of Louisiana against Drake Towing and Drake Energy Partners, citing negligence over injuries he received in a 2012 workplace incident.

According to the suit, on April 22, 2012, Higginbotham, employed by Alliance Oilfield Service, was working on a barge owned by the defendant when he was made to work in the dark. The suit alleges he incurred injuries to his left chest wall, left lung and pneumothorax, fractured ribs, thigh and arm, and other injuries that necessitated hospitalization.

The complaint alleges the vessel was not seaworthy and the defendant failed to maintain a safe work environment, properly light the area, take reasonable safety precautions or otherwise correct dangerous conditions by initiating repairs to the vessel.

The plaintiff cites: physical pain and suffering; mental anguish; loss of wages, benefits and earning capacity; disfigurement and physical impairment; and medical expenses.

Higginbotham seeks actual and punitive damages, attorney fees, expenses and costs. He is represented by attorneys Walter Naquin, Jr. of Thibodaux and Marcus Spagnoletti of Spagnoletti & Co. in Houston.

U.S. District Court Eastern District of Louisiana case number: 2:15-cv-00898-MVL-DEK.

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