Cable & Rope Injuries

crane hanging from cables inside dockside warehouse


Maritime Cable & Rope Injuries

Cables, ropes, winches, and other tools are all crucial parts of maritime work. Whether it’s a crane used to move cargo and packages on or off a ship, the mechanical winch used to raise and lower lifeboats, or other installations, high-tension cables can find themselves looping through many a vessel.

And in any environment where high-tension ropes and cables are used, from warehouses to vessels in navigation, the risk of injury is always present. These ropes and cables, as well as the machinery and equipment they’re attached to, can cause grievous injury if misused or improperly maintained.


Causes of Cable & Rope Injuries

The majority of maritime injuries from ropes & cables are frequently brought about by failure to maintain the needed equipment, and/or a failure to properly train employees on their usage. Among the more common causes of these injuries include:

  • Cables snapping from overuse (and not being properly replaced in time)
  • Crane cables breaking from being pushed past the manufacturer’s weight limit, leading to crushing injuries
  • Winches malfunctioning due to disrepair
  • Ropes snapping from improper use/negligence of needed safety limits on weight and tension
  • Unspooled cables in crowded areas or walkways leading to slip and fall injuries
  • Poor cable management (not being put away properly or stretched in a dangerous fashion) leading to tripping hazards

among others. These injuries can prove dangerous or even deadly in many cases due to the environments the cables are being used in.


Common Injuries from Broken Ropes & Cables

Rope injuries can take many forms, and can be life-threatening in many cases due to the sheer weight, size, and power of the cables being used onboard most commercial vessels. A few of the more common causes include:

  • Broken limbs from tripping/falling on surfaces
  • Lacerations from cables snapping 
  • Electrocution (from thicker electrical cables or metal cable surfaces)
  • Loss of fingers or limbs 
  • Skull fractures
  • Crushing injuries from dropped cargo off a crane or winch
  • Swinging object injuries from broken cables no longer able to support their cargo loads/crane hooks

These injuries are equally likely onboard the vessel as they are on a dock or in a warehouse, and can prove dangerous to maritime works in any role aboard a vessel.


Have You Been Injured By A Rope Or Cable?

If you’ve suffered a rope injury or cable injury while working on the water, the first thing to do is to seek immediate medical attention. Once your wounds have been attended to, contact the offices of O’Bryan Law as soon as possible. We can review the details of your case and work to get you the compensation you deserve, especially if your injury was caused by negligence by the owner of the vessel.