A bill was introduced at the US Congress, aiming to reform the 170-year-old regulation that limits compensation for maritime accidents.
he effort is being led by California’s Congressman Salud Carbajal and Senator Dianne Feinstein, in order to updates an 1851 law that can prevent maritime accident victims and their families from receiving compensation from those responsible for the accident.
According to the Limitation of Liability Act of 1851, boat owners can limit their liability to the value of the vessel after the accident.
The new bill would require owners of small passenger vessels to be held legally responsible, including by requiring compensation, notwithstanding the value of the boat.
The families of those who perished in the tragic Conception boat fire have filed claims against the owners of the boat for violating federal safety rules, but they may not receive any compensation because of a 170-year-old law that doesn’t account for modern tourism such as commercial dive boats
said Senator Feinstein.
While the Limitation of Liability Act of 1851 is applicable to all maritime accidents regardless of the size of the vessel, the new bill entitled the Small Passenger Vessel Liability Fairness Act specifically targets only the smaller “T-boats” Rep. Bill Proposes Reforming Liability for Maritime Accident Compensation.