Defendant says plaintiff to blame for falling out of bed

David Yates Apr. 18, 2012, 10:18am


Deckhand Maximo Schmidt claims he fell out of his bunk bed while serving aboard a dredge vessel, but the ship owner says Schmidt was injured through his own negligence.

As previously reported, on Nov. 2, Schmidt filed suit against Mike Hooks Inc. in Jefferson County District Court, alleging the fall was "due to in adequate lighting."

On Dec. 2 Hooks answered the suit, asserting Schmidt negligently injured himself by failing to exercise a degree of caution for his own safety, court records show.

The answer further states that Schmidt's alleged injures arose out of certain risks that were plainly observable and obvious.

The suit alleges that on Sept. 16 Schmidt was assigned to the dredge vessel and was performing his regular duties as a deckhand.

"Plaintiff seriously injured his back ... when he fell out of his bunk-bed, due to inadequate lighting and a faulty bunk-bed support and ladder," the suit states, adding that Schmidt's injuries were the result of the defendant's alleged negligence.

Schmidt is suing for his alleged past and future medical expenses, mental anguish, pain, impairment, disfigurement and lost wages, plus all court costs.

Houston attorney Anthony Buzbee represents him.

Hooks is represented by Houston attorney Susan Wilson of the Spencer Crain Cubbage Healy & McNamara law firm.

Judge Donald Floyd, 172nd District Court, is assigned to the case.

Case No. E191-289

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