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Fishing Vessels, OSHA Guidelines and Covid: Are You Covered?

February 26, 2021

Is your fishing vessel taking adequate precautions to protect you and your fellow crewmembers from acquiring or transmitting the COVID-19 virus? As you know, fisherman are required to work and live together during trips at sea in poorly ventilated quarters, in close proximity to each other for long periods of time. These working conditions present a perfect environment in which the COVID-19 virus is likely to be transmitted from one person to another if any member of the crew is infected.

If you’ve been out fishing during the pandemic has your vessel taken precautions to protect you and other crewmembers? Below is a brief summary of the COVID-19 related OSHA directives. You can visit OSHA.gov to review their complete guidelines here.

“The General Duty Clause, Section 5(a)(1) of the Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) Act of 1970, 29 USC 654(a)(1), which requires employers to furnish to each worker “employment and a place of employment, which are free from recognized hazards that are causing or are likely to cause death or serious physical harm.”

If you have gotten sick with COVID-19 on or shortly after a fishing trip you may have rights to sue the vessel and the vessel owner for damages related thereto for failure to provide a safe workplace under the Jones Act.

Call us at 617-773-5500 or contact us here for a free evaluation of your current COVID-19 related situation.