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One Dead, One Missing From a Responder Vessel Accident in Louisiana

Posted on Saturday, January 19th, 2019 at 2:06 pm    

2 missing crew members from the spill response vessel Louisiana Responder

Louisiana Responder. Photo credits to Tomás Del Coro

On January 18 the spill response vessel Louisiana Responder had an accident on the Mississippi River near Bootheville in Louisiana. The crew members Ruben Arellano and Katelyn Carlisle went overboard during the event, and Arellano was later found deceased while Carlisle remains missing.

Louisiana Responder was towing a small boat when it capsized, which led to the vessel sinking. According to NBC New Orleans, five workers were on board when it capsized, three of whom were rescued.

The U.S. Coast Guard, Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries, the Branch Pilots, and the local sheriff’s office used their resources to search for the missing crew members for 27 hours. However, on Thursday, the Coast Guard suspended the search.

“Suspending our search is never an easy decision to make. The Coast Guard, along with local and state responders, spared no efforts over the past day, but unfortunately we did not locate the missing individuals. Our prayers and condolences are with the families of the missing individuals,” said Commander Michael Wolfe of the U.S. Coast Guard.

The cause of the accident remains under investigation.

The Louisiana Responder

The ship is a Responder-Class Oil Spill Response Vessel owned by the Marine Spill Response Corporation (MSRC) and based in the waters around Fort Jackson, Louisiana.

The Louisiana Responder was equipped with a single 32-foot Munson Support Boat on the aft deck. This support boat is deployed for site assessments and on-water boom and tow line operations.

MSRC Responds

Since the accident, MSRC continues to cooperate with search and rescue teams and the families of the missing crew members. The company released a statement saying they are deeply saddened by the incident and that their focus is on supporting the families at this difficult time.

MSRC also has set up a Command Center in Louisiana to help manage rescue efforts and the investigation. They have also deployed two vessels to assist the search.

An excerpt from MSRC’s press release on their website:

“In our history of oil spill responses and deployment exercises over the past 28 years, this is the first time our organization has suffered an incident of this severity. We are fully committed to working with the USCG, and internally, to thoroughly investigate the incident and continue our efforts to mitigate the possible risk of injury to our employees in any work that we perform.”

Maritime Accidents - williamskherkher


Maritime Accidents in Louisiana

One of the most talked about maritime accidents in Louisiana is last year’s collapse of the Sunshine Bridge due to a crane accident. The accident affected nearby residents and businesses as the bridge was mounted on a Mississippi River barge.

There are several types of maritime accidents.  Finding the actual cause of these accidents is crucial and requires professionally-conducted maritime accident investigations.

Protecting Your Rights

If you or a loved are involved in a workplace or offshore accident, don’t wait to seek legal representation – even if the investigation is still ongoing. Having legal counsel on your side is crucial to ensure you receive the full compensation you deserve.

The attorneys of Williams Kherkher will help you recover.  Our attorneys will fight for your rights and use all our legal expertise and resources to help you move forward with your life.  Call us at (713) 230-2200 for a free consultation.

Have you or a loved one been injured in an accident?

Contact us today at (888) 220-0640 to get a free, confidential case evaluation.