Former seaman sues 'Deadliest Catch: Dungeon Cove' fisherman

Crabbing gear in Charleston, Nov. 3, 2017. (SBG)

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — A former seaman has sued a fisherman who starred in Discovery Channel's "Deadliest Catch: Dungeon Cove" show, alleging the man was negligent and caused severe injury.

Nolan Dean filed a suit Dec. 6 in federal court against Gary Ripka, nicknamed "The Ripper," who appeared in the first episode of "Deadliest Catch: Dungeon Cove" in September 2016.

Dean claims his arm was broken because Ripka was negligent and his ship wasn't seaworthy, The Oregonian/OregonLive reported .

Dean was working in the back of Ripka's ship, Western Breeze, on May 30, 2015, when Ripka activated a hydraulic control, the complaint states. Dean's arm got caught in a line, and he was hoisted over the deck. Multiple bones broke in his arm.

Ripka declined to talk about the specifics of the case, but he told The Oregonian/OregonLive that he has a history of safe fishing expeditions.

"Our operation has a reputation for being safe. Our crew members know that," Ripka said. "Guys have no problem coming on our boat because they know it's safe."

Dean claims Ripka didn't train him properly and that the hydraulic machinery was used incorrectly.

The complaint alleges Dean suffered pain and anguish, as well as lost wages in the past and the future. The complaint doesn't ask for any specific amount of money.

Dean's lawyer, Joe Stacey, said Dean now has a permanent disability.

Ripka's insurance has already paid for all of Dean's medical expenses, Stacey said.

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Information from: The Oregonian/OregonLive, http://www.oregonlive.com

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