Boating accidents can cause devastating injuries, and it is vital for everyone involved in a boating accident to know what they need to do after the incident. Establishing a negligence claim against a boat operator is not always easy. When a boating accident occurs, the boat operator has a legal responsibility to stop the vessel immediately at the accident scene. Never leave the boating accident scene until the responding authorities review the location and fill out a formal report. When required by law, failure to report a boating accident carries severe legal penalties, potentially including fines and jail time.
If You Get Into a Boating Accident
Inexperience is the leading cause of boating accidents. Other primary contributors that result in accidents, injuries, and deaths are improper lookout, excessive speed, alcohol use, machinery failure, the force of wave or wake, hazardous waters, and the weather.
- The boat operator must report the accident to the Coast Guard.
- If you are not severely injured, document the accident, gather evidence and collect eyewitness statements.
- If another party caused your boating accident, you could hold them accountable for any damages resulting from the incident.
- Seek Medical Attention- The doctor who treats your injuries can provide you with a medical report.
Providing Negligence for a Boating Accident
The success of your claim will rely on your ability to show that the boat operator was at fault. For example, suppose the simple life jacket protocol was not followed, and someone falls overboard and drowns. In that case, the boat owner or operator could be liable for wrongful death.
- First, identify the defendant and prove that they owed you a duty of care in the situation in question.
- Second, you must show how the defendant neglected this duty of care. Suppose you see the boat operator drinking alcohol (or doing drugs/illegal medication) while piloting the vessel. In that case, you could assert boating under the influence as a breach of duty.
- Third, you must provide an accurate list of all the damages you intend to claim in your case. Your attorney can guide you in collecting the documentation you will need to prove the extent of your damages.
- Finally, it would help if you established causation between the defendant’s breach of duty of care and your claimed damages. You can only receive compensation for damages that directly resulted from the defendant’s negligence. For example, suppose you had a preexisting injury. You could not seek compensation for this injury; however, if your boating accident made your injury worse. In that case, you could seek compensation for any medical bills you incurred for your worsened condition.
When you have sustained damages due to another party’s negligence, it’s vital to consult a boating accident attorney to discuss your options. Your boat accident claim could yield significant compensation for your damages.
We Are Here To Help
If you or a loved one have been injured in a boating accident, you will need a professional attorney you can trust to handle your case. At Edelman, Krasin, & Jaye, PLLC, we offer more than 60 years of combined experience. We have convenient office locations in Long Island, Brooklyn, and the Bronx, and we know how to approach these cases to get the results you need. Our firm is committed to bringing the compensation you deserve. Contact our New York offices by phone at 800-469-7429 to schedule an appointment. You can also contact us using our online contact form and our Live Chat application on our website to have your questions answered.