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Boat Accident Injuries & Deaths – Sacramento Attorneys

We Fight for the Victims of Boat Accidents Caused by Negligence

During a hot California summer, there’s nothing better than a day out on the water. Boating isn’t always downtime, though. Whether you’re fishing, entertaining, or just out for a ride, boats come with many dangers. The hazards increase when others on the water are careless and negligent. If you’ve been injured in a boat accident, make sure you have the right legal team on your side.

Boating Accident Cause and Liability

Each year, hundreds of people die in boating accidents and thousands may be injured. Many factors can contribute to ill fortune on the waters. Boaters are uniquely vulnerable both because the ocean alone can be deadly and because they are far from land and, therefore, help. Small mistakes made in the minute or even during preparation could lead to tragedy. The most common boating accidents in 2018 were:

  • Collision with another recreational watercraft
  • Collision with a fixed object
  • Craft becoming flooded or swamped
  • Accidental grounding
  • Falls overboard

However, this is just a small segment of the many factors that can lead to injuries or death. Though determining the cause of an accident may not be easy, it’s the first step to receiving the compensation you need for your recovery.

Operator Negligence

Much like driving a car, piloting a boat requires one to pay attention to many different elements at one time to ensure everyone’s safety. Pilots should be licensed, but they can still make mistakes or poor choices. Distractions or mishandling of a boat may cause a collision, capsize, grounding, or another injurious event.

Equipment Error and Failure

Buoyancy takes a lot of work, especially when boats are equipped with heavy engines and/or made to hold many people. Should the hull of the boat fail, its occupants may find themselves sinking. If an engine spontaneously shuts off, a craft will be stranded. Or, if steering, braking, or similar components break down, the pilot may have no way to avoid a crash.

Alcohol Use

Drinking while you’re piloting a boat is against the law, but each year, many people take the chance with their, and others’, lives. Alcohol is the primary cause of 19% of fatal boat accidents, according to the U.S. Coast Guard. Whether you’re in a boat that’s being driven by someone who’s had too much to drink or you’re hit by another craft with an inebriated pilot, you could have cause to bring a claim against them for their recklessness.

Commercial vs. Personal Craft Injuries

If you’re injured on a paid-for cruise, the parties you’ll hold liable will be different than those you’d bring to account after an accident on your friend’s malfunctioning jet ski. Any company that owns and/or operates boats commercially must have insurance to cover their business. Personal craft, meanwhile, are typically covered by homeowner’s insurance. In the second example above, with a malfunctioning jet ski, you would work with either the manufacturer’s insurance (if the defect was in the design) or the maintenance and repair company that failed to do their job properly.

Were You Injured in a Boating Accident?

As boating accidents vary in type, the injuries suffered by victims cover a wide range. Those involved in a crash or collision on the water may experience:

If you or a loved one has been hurt in one of these ways and/or suffered other serious injuries in a boating accident, you may be able to sue for compensation. With the high prices of medical care, you may need significant financial help to access quality care and achieve a full recovery.

Boating accidents are serious, and so are we. Call Del Rio & Caraway, P.C. at (916) 229-6755 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. We provide small-firm attention and quality advocacy.

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