Common Causes of Boating Accidents
With the summer months right around the corner, many people will be getting out into nature to enjoy some fun in the sun. Boating is one of the most common and enjoyable summer activities. Nothing beats hitting the open water in a boat and experiencing all that nature has to offer.
While this can be an enjoyable activity, there are also a number of dangers that come with boating. Each year, there are thousands of boating accidents, and these mishaps can cause a lot of damage and injuries. The following are some of the most common causes of these boating accidents.
Distracted Operation of the Boat
One of the main causes of serious accidents and injuries related to boats is operators that are distracted. If a person were to take their eyes off the water for even a second, they could run into a person in the water, another boat or other water craft, shoals or sandbars, docks, logs or other debris. Cases even arise when distracted boat operators literally run boats into shore or seawalls. Distracted boating includes using a cell phone, drinking, talking to passengers and more. Virtually anything that could distract a vehicle driver, could also distract someone operating a boat. If you are injured by a distracted boater, you have the right to sue for monetary compensation.
Drinking While Boating
U. S. Coastguard statistics indicate that the vast majority of all boating accidents occur in combination with consumption of alcohol. Just like drinking and driving, drinking and boating is extremely dangerous. Not only does it put the person and everyone on their boat at risk, but also other people enjoying the water. Alcohol can reduce a person’s reaction time, which may result in them hitting a person or another watercraft. This is another situation where you can sue someone if they are found drinking while operating the boat that causes your injury.
Boat owners have a duty to ensure their water vessel is in good, running condition. This means they check the systems for issues regularly. If you are injured because of another boater, and it is proven their boat was not properly maintained or an evident issue was not repaired, then you may also have the right to file a claim. It is best to hire a personal injury attorney to ensure you know your rights.
Violating the Navigational Rules
When a person is driving their vehicle down the road, they know there are certain laws and regulations you have to follow, or run the risk of being given a ticket. The same is true for anyone operating a boat on the water. If operator doesn’t follow the rules, and it results in an accident where someone else’s property is damaged or an injury occurs, the at-fault party can be held liable and you can recover compensation.
While it is not always going to be possible to avoid a boat accident, there are steps you can take to remain safe while on the water. If you know the causes of boating accidents, you can avoid these dangerous situations. If you ever find you are in a boating accident that was not your fault, then contact a personal injury attorney for help.