Fall from ladder on shrimp boat leads to suit

David Yates Apr. 5, 2007, 10:00am

Peter Cao has filed a lawsuit against Robert Le and his shrimp boat Miss Valerie II for not providing a safe working environment. The Jefferson County resident fell off a ladder while cleaning.

According to the plaintiff's petition, On Oct. 12, 2005, Cao was employed by Lee and was a crew member aboard the Valerie.

While the ship was deployed in navigable waters, Cao was cleaning the ship when he slipped and fell of a ladder, his suit states. "As a result of defendant's negligence, Cao injured his knee and other parts of his body."

Cao is claiming the defendant was negligent for failing to properly supervise him while cleaning, train him, provide adequate safety equipment, provide adequate medical treatment, operating the vessel with an inadequate crew and failing to maintain the vessel.The plaintiff filed the suit under the Jones Act.

He is suing for physical impairment, mental anguish, discomfort and distress. Cao filed his lawsuit on April 4 with the Jefferson County District Court.

He is represented by Houston attorneys Jason Itkin and Stephen Foster of the law firm Arnold & Itkin.

Court assignment is pending.

Case No. D179-065

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