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Boating Accident Lawyer

Every year thousands of residents plan a trip to go boating or swimming with their friends at one of the many beaches, lakes or rivers in the United State . Most of the time their trips are an enjoyable, relaxing, and fun time spent with their friends and family. Unfortunately, not every trip to the beaches of turns out well. According to the United States Coast Guard, 478 boating accidents were reported in in 2009, not to mention countless boating injuries that do not result in fatality and property damage claims.

Who is Responsible for my injury and What can I Recover if I Hire a Boat Injury Lawyer?

Typically the person who caused your injury is who your Boat Accident Lawyer will sue to make you whole. Under law, a person is responsible for your injury if they acted negligently. It is important to contact a boat accident attorney because, depending on the facts of your boating injury, you may be able to sue more than just the person who was driving the boat.

What are the common causes of boating accidents?

Inexperienced Boaters

A common cause of boat accidents is inexperienced boaters in dangerous and unfamiliar situations. Similar to a paved road, waterways have rules that govern how boats are supposed to interact when passing one another. When one person is ignorant of these rules or ignores them, it can easily lead to a boating accident. Courses on safe boating are offered in every state. Many states even require some or all boaters to take such a course.

The Coast Guard will issue you a citation if you fail to follow these regulations.

Alcohol and Drugs

One of the largest factors in boating accidents is alcohol. It is well documented that a person's reaction time is hindered when under the influence of alcohol. Avoid penalties and injuries. Don't mix boating and alcohol. Just like you would have a designated driver on land, you need one on a boat as well. In many states, drunk boating can lead to fines and jail time. Some states even treat it like drunk driving and will take away your driver's license.

What do I do if I am involved in a boating accident?

If you have been involved in a boating accident the first thing you should do is look out for the safety for yourself and all of your passengers on board. After you have addressed the safety of all of the people on your vessel you should address any life threatening damage to your boat such as a fire or a hole in the hull of the boat that may cause you or your passengers harm. Next, if it is safe, nearly every state requires you to offer assistance to anyone injured in the accident and minimize the danger the accident poses to other boaters.

Boat operators involved in an accident must provide their name, address and vessel registration number to other involved parties, provide assistance to any injured persons and, in case of a death or disappearance, report the accident without delay to law enforcement officials. Boat operators or owners generally must also make a written report of a boating accident to their state's Department of Boating and Waterways when:

  • A person dies, disappears, or is injured and requires medical treatment beyond first aid.
  • Total damage to all vessels involved and other property is above a certain dollar amount or there is complete loss of a vessel.

Does the law require me to have any specific equipment on my boat?

The Coast Guard has extensive requirements for boating safety equipment. The full list of Federal Boating Regulations can be found on the Coast Guard Website. Each state has its own boating safety requirements. These laws are often, but not always, similar to the Coast Guard requirements.

Other Boating Resources

Boat Owners Association of The United States
880 South Pickett Street
Alexandria, VA 22304
U.S. Coast Guard Headquarters
2100 Second Street Southwest, Stop 7581
Washington, DC 20593-7581

If you have been hurt in a recreational boat or watercraft accident, contact a Boat Accident Lawyer today.

Boating Accident Lawyers will zealously pursue your claim. Only a licensed Boating Lawyer can help you get the money you need and the justice you deserve.