Charles R. Lipcon
Charles R. Lipcon is the firm's founding attorney and has been handling injury, cruise line sexual assault and wrongful death claims for over 40 years. Read More »
Jason R. Margulies
Jason R. Margulies is an experienced maritime lawyer and an active trial attorney handling personal injury, cruise line sexual assault and wrongful death claims. Read More »
Ricardo V. Alsina
Ricardo V. Alsina is an active trial attorney, handling personal injury, cruise line sexual assault and wrongful death claims. Read More »
Michael A. Winkleman
Mr. Winkleman is an active trial and appellate attorney handling all personal injury, cruise line sexual assault and wrongful death claims, as well as complex business disputes. Read More »
KENNETH LONG, Plaintiff, v. UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Defendant.
Action No: 2:04cv82
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OFVIRGINIA, NORFOLK DIVISION
339 F. Supp. 2d 729; 2004 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 20881
October 6, 2004, Decided
PROCEDURAL POSTURE: Plaintiff former steward was injured while working in the walk-in freezer of a vessel and filed an action against defendant United States, alleging claims under the Jones Act, 46 U.S.C.S. § 688, and a claim that the vessel operated by the United States was unseaworthy. The United States filed a motion for summary judgment.
OVERVIEW: The steward was injured when he was in a walk-in freezer and a piece of frozen meat fell and landed on the steward’s foot. The steward claimed that the United States, as the owner of the vessel, was negligent under the Jones Act, 46 U.S.C.S. § 688, because the meat in the vessel was improperly stored, secured, and inspected. The steward alleged a claim that the vessel was unseaworthy for the same reasons. The court denied the United States’ motion for summary judgment. The court held that there was a genuine factual controversy relating to the Jones Act claim so that summary judgment was not appropriate. The parties disputed who was responsible for the negligence that caused the steward’s injury, particularly when the steward had been charged with securing items in the freezer. The court noted that the same factual disputes made summary judgment on the claim of unseaworthiness inappropriate. The steward provided evidence that other ships used for long voyages had larger freezers. The court rejected the United States’ assertion that the primary duty rule acted as a complete bar to the steward’s claims.
OUTCOME: The court denied the United States’ motion for summary judgment.