Federal jurors in Seattle have awarded $3.45 million to the estate and survivors of a woman who drowned in 2010 while working on a ship conversion.
The Seattle Times reported the jurors found the ship’s owner, G Shipping Ltd., was negligent in the death of 33-year-old Lia Hawkins. She was part of a crew hired to convert a former oceanographic research vessel into a luxury floating hotel.
The newspaper says G Shipping is a Malta company controlled by Italian race-car driver and hotelier Emanuele Garosci.
The lawsuit alleged Hawkins fell overboard through an unsecured gap in the ship’s deck railing where she had been throwing heavy metal refuse into a recycling container four decks below. Her lawyer said the shipping company had done little to ensure a safe workspace.
G Shipping lawyer Kevin Beauchamp Smith said Wednesday his client thinks the award is excessive and plans to appeal.
Jurors returned their verdict Friday.
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