Spring break takes many to the water and boating is a very popular spring break activity. Whether you are on a serene, sunny lake or boating on a river or in the ocean, it is important to know what to do should you find yourself in a boating accident. A personal injury lawyer explains more today in our blog.
Any event on the water where a passenger dies, is seriously injured, disappears suspiciously, or a vessel sustains or causes serious damage is considered by the US Coast Guard to be a boating accident. Boating accidents have many causes, just like auto accidents, and all states have criminalized “BUI” – boating under the influence. In fact, more than one-third of boating accidents are caused by a boat driver who is under the influence. Intoxication, while boating and having an accident results in strict liability and the services of an experienced maritime personal injury lawyer, are necessary.
Boating accidents may also be caused by severe weather including strong winds or heavy rain. The boat driver may be unable to keep control of his vessel in severe weather resulting in capsizing or other damage to a vessel.
An improperly ventilated boat engine may also result in carbon monoxide poisoning to its passenger, resulting in sickness or even death.
Finally, boat accidents may occur when the driver is navigating unfamiliar waters and may run aground, hit an underwater obstacle or generally by not following the local signs.
Boating Accident Liability
Just like with automobiles, the liability for a boating accident lies with the owner/operator. It is up to this person to make sure that the boat is well maintained, an eye is kept on the weather, all local rules and signs are followed and most importantly, the driver of the boat is not intoxicated. Generally, the rules of liability are similar to those on land, with the exception of damage caused by a large wake. While most boat accident liability is civil, the state may bring criminal charges if boating under the influence is involved or a death or disabling injuries have occurred. Ask your local personal injury lawyer for more information about your state’s laws.
Tolbert Beadle LLC Personal Injury Lawyers
If you find yourself involved in a boating accident resulting in damage, death or severe injury, you need a reliable personal injury lawyer on your side. Tolbert Beadle LLC is Missouri’s leading law firm with three conveniently located offices in Springfield, Jefferson City, and Columbia, MO. Visit our website today to make an appointment with a personal injury lawyer!