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The many types of injuries faced by deckhands on fishing boats

Deckhands are essential crew members on commercial fishing boats. Rarely are they taken for granted, but, often, they may not get the credit and recognition they deserve. Deckhands have so many responsibilities in this extremely physical job. Those duties may include from operating the fishing nets and lines, hauling aboard the day’s catch of fish and shrimp and cleaning them to lifting heavy objects, using ropes and knots and assisting in emergencies.

There are plenty of dangers, too, and the hours grueling. The weather may turn harsh while on the gulf, and falling overboard and drowning is a possibility. If the boat breaks down, the crew is responsible for repairing it because no one else is around. And you are susceptible to serious and life-changing injuries.

Understand the job, know the dangers

With the many daily tasks for which you are responsible, it is crucial to understand the proper and safe way to accomplish them. But accidents occur, and, often, they are out of your control. Among the injuries that deckhands face on commercial fishing vessels include:

  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Back injuries
  • Neck injuries
  • Fractures to the arms, legs, skull and ribs
  • Loss of limb/amputation
  • Burns
  • Hypothermia
  • Hearing loss
  • Repetitive stress injuries
  • Sprains and strains

Every crew member of a commercial fishing has specific duties. As a deckhand, you understand your place among the crew and the dangers of your job. Working as a team is critical as your survival depends on it. And stay healthy, too. After all, in a few years you may become captain of the boat and lead your own crew.