Anchorage is a key location for injury at sea and maritime injury cases. Most major and immediate injury treatment for serious injuries result in air evacuation to one of the two major hospitals in Anchorage. Anchorage is also home to the major marine safety office of the Coast Guard, and most accident and injury investigations conducted by the Coast Guard for purposes of filling out and filing Form 2692 are filed in the Anchorage office of the Marine Safety Section of the Coast Guard.
We are in Anchorage for meetings with clients and for investigating Coast Guard records on maritime accidents and personal injuries. We have found the most efficient method of investigating Coast Guard records is obtaining the records directly from the Marine Safety office in Anchorage, and discussing directly with the Coast Guardsman involved the specific investigation of an maritime accident or injury at sea.
Anchorage is also important regarding jurisdiction and the location for filing of cases. Some cases are more appropriate brought in Alaska, and Anchorage in particular, than Seattle. Anchorage often figures prominently into where we file personal injury claims on behalf of an injured mariner.
We are often consulted by injured mariners upon their arrival at medical facilities in Anchorage. We frequently discuss cases with clients shortly following admission for treatment. Often, in the case of serious injury, claims representatives will pursue a specific course of medical treatment for an injured mariner that may or may not be in the injured person's best interest. In our experience, extending over 24 years, we sometimes can assist in determining whether the selected health care professionals are the best-suited treatment providers for the specific injury involved. Often, we can assist in ensuring that complete medical coverage is provided, and the injured mariner is being provided all necessary treatment.
While Anchorage has a large complement of Board-certified medical practitioners, there are occasions when an injured mariner may benefit by additional medical treatment in Seattle. There may be circumstances where additional expertise is available in Seattle that may not be available in Anchorage, sometimes specifically in areas of specialized neurosurgical treatment, MRI and PET scans, brain injury and highly specialized arthroscopic surgery. Especially in circumstances where the mariner's vessel is based in Seattle, or the employer is Seattle based, additional treatment may be provided and covered, all as part of the claim. In appropriate circumstances, we assist in getting additional medical coverage where there has been an injury at sea.