Come summertime and long weekends, boating enthusiasts are out in force. Some people go out for a day of fishing, others go water skiing, while others just like to feel the wind in their face as they push to boat to their speed limits. In addition to the typical boat, hundreds of thousands of people have personal watercraft, such as SkiDoos and JetSkis, which they usually operate at high speed, close to traditional types of motorboats.
Boating accidents can come about in a number of ways: collisions between two boats whose drivers were not paying attention to the waterway ahead of them or misjudging the speed or direction of another boat; running over a downed skier; failure of the persons on the boat to wear approved and properly fitted life jackets to prevent them from drowning if they are thrown overboard; or a skier or swimmer at the back of the boat getting mangled by a propeller that does not have a guard around it.
Alcohol plays a major role in many boat injuries and fatalities. Many if not most boating accidents can be prevented by a skilled, attentive boat operator who makes sure everyone is equipped with a life jacket and who operates the boat in a safe manner. Operator inattention is the leading cause of boating accidents, followed by careless or reckless operation of the boat and excessive speed.
The operator of the boat is required to know the “rules of the road,” such as who has the right-of-way, having an observer on board when pulling a skier, and all other safety practices to ensure that no one is injured or killed by the operator’s carelessness or ignorance of the rules regarding the operation of a vessel.
If you or a loved one has been seriously injured or killed in a boating accident, contact an experienced personal injury lawyer immediately so he or she can start working right away to obtain all the monetary compensation you are entitled to.