Cruising around a lake under the hot summer sun with friends and family is an activity hard to top. As a boat owner, you provide a true service that creates fond memories for all involved. However, those memories can turn into traumatic experiences if you are not responsible. Just like a car accident, if your negligence is the cause of someone else’s personal injury or wrongful death, you can be held liable to cover the hefty charges of others.
If a victim and their lawyer have evidence that results in another’s personal injury, drowning or some other wrongful death, you, the boat owner, are usually at fault. However, charges may fall on the boat’s manufacturing company, a boating rental company, or another passenger’s reckless behavior. It is best to still be sure that you are alert at all times and that you are aware of potential legal charges if an accident happens.
Causes To Avoid
Striking Land in Shallow Waters, a Protruding Rock, or Another Large Object
Collision with Another Vessel
Hitting Another Boat’s Wake when:
- The boat operator is traveling carelessly,
- The boat operator could have warned others,
- Or could have prevented harm another way.
Failure to Provide Safety Equipment for Passengers Onboard
Operating while Intoxicated
Boat Accident Liability and Statistics
It is easy to think that you are a responsible boat owner, but accidents of all kinds are unpredictable and can happen to anyone. In 2017, there were 4,291 accidents, 2,629 injuries, and 658 deaths. Most accidents take place from 4:30-6:30 pm, during July, and on Saturdays. If you happen to be in an accident that involves someone else’s personal injury, you may be liable to cover their medical bills, their lost earnings or lost earning capacity, and/or pain and suffering charges.
Not every accident is the boat owner or operator’s fault, but that does not stop passengers from trying to make a claim against you if they are in an accident. To protect yourself from any false accusations, contact an attorney on our team by filling out your free consultation online.
For any other boat-related questions or safety measures, take a look at some of our other blogs!