The most probable question on your mind right now is who a dredge worker is? Simply put, it is an employee of the maritime authorities whose primary role is dredging. This work involves using unique ships to excavate sediments from the bottom of water bodies and then transport them to the desired location.

As with any other form of maritime employment, dredging comes with several risks and potential for worker injury. According to a local dredge worker injury law firm, here are some common dangers faced by dredge workers;-

Falling Overboard                                                                           

Slips and falls form part of our everyday lives. Injuries sustained range from a sprain, bruise or laceration, to more severe injuries, such as fractures and spinal cord injuries. Slips and falls are common amongst dredge works. However, the expected injuries are usually lethal, mainly if one falls overboard when the dredging systems are activated.

Blocked Dredging Pipelines

Most dredging vessels utilize complex vacuums and tubes to transport materials from the bottom of the lake or river to a storage tank on the ship. These pipes are prone to clogging, breakdown, and blockage if not properly maintained, resulting in severe damage and injuries.

Simultaneously, maintenance is risky and can result in serious arm injury if one does not use the correct equipment. Either way, the dredger worker’s safety is at stake.

High-Pressure Water

Some dredgers use high-pressure water to carve paths on shallow water bodies so boats can safely pass. However, these hydraulic systems pose a safety risk to the workers onboard.

If the water is not properly shut off or rerouted, any damage to the system can result in serious injuries, including scalded skin and injured limbs. Additionally, broken hoses can result in a chemical spill or steam injuries and bruising.

Heavy machinery

Undoubtedly, dredgers fall under the heavy machinery category. As with other heavy-duty machines, dredgers come with their set of risks, given that they operate at sea. Should a crane malfunction, or payload drop, the damages and injuries are unimaginable, with most workers losing their lives. Besides, undersea dredgers can also malfunction, resulting in catastrophic injuries and damage.


As with any other form of work, communication is very crucial when working on a dredger. Unfortunately, an auger or crane operator may misunderstand the instructions given, resulting in a deadly collision, or worse still, pick a load before it is adequately secured. For this reason, most dredgers utilize strict communication and safety protocols.  

Undersea Collisions

There is no denying that dredgers operate in challenging conditions. Sometimes, these vast machines may encounter undersea collisions, resulting in serious dredge accidents and catastrophic injuries. Besides, other collision types are a huge concern when dredges are involved in construction.

Untrained Crew Members

Operating dredges is more complicated than any other maritime vessel, as there are dozens of moving parts that demand correct usage and maintenance. If the shipowner does not ensure everyone is adequately trained, it can result in injuries due to negligence or incorrect equipment handling.


Dredging is an attractive job as it requires minimal qualifications, and the pay is relatively good. However, the workers are faced with life-threatening dangers, as discussed above. If you wish to become a dredge worker, you should familiarize yourself with these risks before committing yourself.