Boating Accident Lawyers Who Get Maximum Injury Compensation
In seasonal states, summer means a huge influx of boat traffic in local waterways. In states where people are lucky enough to have boating weather all year round, those waterways remain crowded with both commercial and leisure traffic every day of the year. With all that traffic, regardless of how responsible you are, there are bound to be individuals who simply do not care. Of course, there will also be legitimate accidents. In either case, you may need a boating accident lawyer to ensure you get the settlement you deserve when you are the victim of someone else’s negligence.
Are Boating Accidents Different Than Car Accidents?
In one word, “yes.” The most obvious difference in boating accidents and car accidents in the safety measures built into cars that are not present in boats. For instance, airbags are now present in most cars on the road today, but they are not there for boats. Additionally, while seat belts are present in boats, they are not mandatory and not as restrictive as they are in cars. For that very reason, it is not uncommon to have someone in a boating collision thrown overboard from the force of the crash. If they are not thrown overboard, there can often be some type of severe trauma from the force of the collision.
There are also additional dangers when riding in boats that are not generally present on the road. For instance, boats rely on their “captain’s” knowledge for the right of way, whereas cars have traffic lights and signage to dictate, so an inexperienced boat owner could unknowingly be the cause of a collision for simply not knowing these rules.
Does Car Insurance Cover Boat Accidents?
While boats do have to be registered, not all states require boat insurance to take the boat out on the water. In states where this is the case, insurance coverage can get a bit tricky. This can get even trickier if the vessel is not a motorized boat, such as a paddleboat, canoe, or a kayak. While it may seem reasonable that your car insurance would cover an accident in cases such as this, that is NOT the case. In some cases, homeowner’s insurance may cover the costs, but it does not necessarily cover all costs and there will be cases where none of the costs are covered.
What Are the Most Common Boating Accidents?
This will vary from state-to-state, but in general, boating accidents are caused by:
- Collisions (fixed objects or other vessels)
- Falling on the boat
- Falling overboard
- Fuel fires
- Striking underwater objects
- Wake damage
Oddly enough, a significant amount of boating accidents and injuries occur at the dock or nearby. They can also happen in waterways where the “captain” is not familiar with inlets or marshy waters and swamps. The one common factor we do see throughout, though, is inexperience. This is especially true when boats are out for leisure, as people can be very careless when water skiing, tubing, or just out with friends on a “booze cruise.”
Who is Liable?
If there is an accident between two boats, the person found to be liable will be the individual found to have been acting negligently. For instance, if someone was driving recklessly and it caused another boat to run ashore or crash into a buoy, the individual driving the “reckless” boat could be held responsible for all damage.
Additionally, if there is someone aboard a boat that is acting recklessly or irresponsible and their behavior is found to be the cause of the accident, he or she could be found liable for damages.
Most Common Boating Accident Injuries
Due to the nature of boating, the types of injuries we see are widespread. Some examples of these injuries are:
- Slip and fall
- Brain trauma
- Spinal trauma
- Lung infections
- Broken bones
What Compensation Can a Boating Accident Lawyer Secure?
Just as in any other type of accident, if you are the victim, you are going to be entitled to compensation and damages. Some of the most common compensation boating accident lawyers will fight for in these cases are:
- Recovery for medical bills (including medication, therapy, etc.)
- Recovery of lost earnings (past, present, and future)
- Pain and suffering
- Damages to boat and/or property
- Future damages due to accident
The challenge for boating accident victims, as briefly mentioned above, is that many states do not require boating insurance to have a vessel on the water. That being the case, you will more than likely need an attorney to navigate the case, as things could get very ugly if the defendant does not have boating insurance and his or her home owner’s insurance will not cover the full claim.
If you have recently been in a boating accident and would like to find out if you are entitled to compensation, give us a call at 855-633-0888. Your initial call is free of charge and you will be under no obligation to use our services, so don’t delay. If you would like to learn more about our legal services before contacting us, click here.