A longshoreman who claims he was injured two years ago during an incident aboard a cargo ship that was docked at a Philadelphia port has filed a federal complaint against the ship’s operator.
Philadelphia attorney Robert P. Fine filed the personal injury claim Sept. 27 at the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania on behalf of Pennsylvania resident Alexander Braun, Jr., and his wife, Nancy Braun.
The defendants named in the lawsuit are Liberia-based Roca Maritime Ltd., as well as German companies Columbus Shipmanagement GmbH and Hamburg Sudamerikanische Dampfschiffahrts-Gesellschaft KG.
According to the complaint, Alexander Braun, who was employed at the time as a longshoreman for Greenwich Terminals, was aboard the Cap Roca ship on March 30, 2009, performing cargo operations as part of his occupation, when he was caused to fall through a floor opening in the ship’s wooden walkway.
While navigating two of the ship’s bays, the wooden planks in the floor failed and gave way, opening like a “trap door” under Braun’s feet, and causing his right leg to go through the opening, resulting in him doing a split and landing hard on his back and elbows, the lawsuit states.
As a result of the fall, Braun suffered injuries to his lower back, right knee and both arms. He also experienced shoulder troubles due to the accident.
Furthermore, Braun was caused to experience aches, pains, and discomfort, as well as bodily limitations and restrictions, the suit claims.
Braun has had to spend various sums of money on medical attention to treat and cure his injuries, and he has suffered a loss of earnings due to his inability to work.
The lawsuit accuses the defendants of carelessness and negligence for using “inadequate, substandard and weak” wooden materials for the construction of the ship’s walkway, and failing to properly inspect, repair, replace, maintain and/or secure the “inadequate, weathered, worn, deteriorated, decayed, weak, cracked, rotten, aged and broken wooden planks in the walkway” that led to the plaintiff’s accident.
Alexander Braun seeks $75,000 in damages. His wife, Nancy Braun, also seeks judgment in the amount of $75,000 for the loss of her husband’s companionship, support and services.
A jury trial is not being demanded.
The federal case number is 2:11-cv-06058-PD.