Coast Guard medevacs crewmember aboard tanker after 20-foot fall

A 28-year-old man was medevaced after sustaining about a 20-foot fall aboard a tanker in the fairway anchorage off Sabine, off the coast of Texas, Saturday afternoon.

The captain of the 800-foot Cyprus flagged tanker, Nordmark, radioed watchstanders at U.S. Coast Guard Sector Houston-Galveston for assistance, reporting that a crewmember had sustained an injury to his back after falling in the engineering space.

The aircrew hoisted the man from the tanker and transported him to St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in Beaumont for medical care.

The man was transported in stable condition.

“It’s a good thing the Coast Guard is able to respond to these kind of emergency situations,” said Bill Segelken, a watchstander at the sector. “The Coast Guard recognizes that accidents happen and it is important for us to be there, because we are the only ones with the capabilities to conduct medical evacuations from boats.

“Fall related injuries are relatively unique,” commented Coast Guard spokesman Bill Segelken, “We probably do accident related medevacs once a month or so.”

Segelken noted the more common accidents are from fishing vessels from men working in fishing gear, anchor chains and lines.

U.S. law affords seamen a variety of remedies including maintenance and cure, and recovery for negligence under the Jones Act. Even seamen who are foreign nationals and work aboard foreign-flagged vessels may be entitled to remedies under U.S. law depending on a variety of factors. If you or someone you know is injured while working aboard a vessel, it is important to contact an experienced maritime lawyer to determine your rights for recovery.