Unfortunately, a lovely day spent on the water can quickly turn tragic.
The causes are many, some of the most common ones include:
- Defective watercraft;
- Deferctive equipmen equipment;
- Intentional wrongdoing;
- Improper maintenance;
- Lack of training;
- Operator's negligence
Boating accidents can result in serious back and neck injuries, spinal cord damage, traumatic brain injuries, hypothermia, burn injuries, broken bones, and death by drowning.
Victims of devastating boating accidents are often left to deal with:
- Severe injuries;
- Permanent disabilities;
- Boat and property damage;
- Expensive medical treatment;
- Lost wages from time off from work.
If you or a loved one got injured in a boating accident, you may be facing years of recovery or even permanent disability. Fortunately, when a disaster occurs, people affected have the juridical prerogative to pursue monetary coverage from those at fault, including manufacturers of defective water crafts and inattentive boat operants.
RECENT BOATING ACCIDENTS VERDICTS & SETTLEMENTS
$1.4 Mil Product Liability
WHAT OUR CLIENTS SAY ABOUT THEIR CASES
After being inefficiently represented, we were relieved to find a professional, versed, and friendly attorney. John M. O'Brien made sure that in our settlement we obtained the money deserved.
Exercising my legal rights to sue, I didn't know what to expect. I am grateful to Mr. O'Brien for always being available and making it an easy process. I will definitely choose him again.
Mr. O'Brien treated my case better than I imagined it was possible. Owing to his diligence and professionalism we settled rapidly. Also, the compensation received was more than I expected. Thank you!
No other lawyer returned my calls before. Mr. O'Brien was always available, that is why I felt he cares about me and my case. Also, it was obvious that he has plenty of experience.
Just a note to say "thank you," you made us (finally) feel like we were important! Thanks again for all of your time and efforts. Please tell Kathy and Brenda the same!
Joan & Bob
You and your staff made this process go very smoothly. Also, you went above and beyond and exceeded all expectations. I will definitely contact you for any future mishaps.
As I reflect back on the events of the past three years, I see what a huge part you have played in our lives and I am so grateful.
Boating Accident Figures
As the United States Coast Guard reported in 2014, the 4064 recreational boating accidents involved 610 deaths, 2678 injuries and approximately $39 million of compensations for property.
Open motorboats (47%) were the most common type of water crafts involved in accidents followed by personal watercraft (17%) and cabin motorboats (15%) while eight out of every ten of the boaters who drowned were utilizing vessels no bigger than 21 feet in length.
The most important five contributing factors in boat accidents are:
- Operator negligence;
- Operator lack of experience;
- Incorrect lookout;
- Machinery failure;
- Alcohol use;
- Excessive speed.
Almost 78% of all fatal boating accident victims drowned, out of which 84% were not wearing a life jacket. Regarding fatal boating accidents, alcohol use lead to 21% of boat crash deaths, being the leading contributing factor in fatal boating disasters.
Prevailing Categories of Boating Disasters
The most prevailing types of fatal boating accidents involve:
- Collision with Vessel;
- Flooding or Swamping;
- Skier Mishap;
- Falls Overboard;
- Collision with Fixed Object;
- Fire/Explosion (Other than Fuel);
- Hitting a submerged object;
- Casualties while swimming (usually by drowning) from a boat. Being unanchored, the watercraft drifts away from the swimmer so he/she can't reach it;
- A person struck by a vessel, steering machinery, propulsion unit, or propeller;
- Exposure to carbon monoxide.
The injured person may file a lawsuit and has the right to receive compensation for the pain and suffering, medical expenses, past and future lost wages, and even punitive damages.
If someone has been either killed or injured or if a boat was damaged during a boating accident, it's better to contact our experienced Elk Grove-based attorney to review and discuss your case.
Quick action is important since there is a strict deadline for filing a boating accident legal claim. The deadline is known as "statute of limitations". California recognizes a 2-year statute of limitations; however, cruise lines can reduce this limitation to 1 year or less.
Boating accident attorneys can handle the following types of boating accidents:
- Wave runner or jet ski accidents;
- Wind and kite surfing accidents;
- Accidents caused by drugs or alcohol abuse;
- Snorkeling or scuba accidents;
- Waterskiing or tubing accidents;
- Parasailing accidents;
- Commercial fishing accidents;
- Ferry worker accidents;
- Kayaking or canoe accidents;
- Passenger boating accidents such as a ferry or a cruise liner.
Catastrophic Injuries Linked to Boating Accidents
Boating disasters can result in tragic injuries, including:
California Boating Laws
In California, it is against the law to operate a vessel in a reckless manner that would endanger the life, physical integrity, and property of others. This includes operating in areas used by swimmers, operating at excessive speed and making sharp turns.
Passengers are not allowed to ride where there is a danger of falling overboard. Boat owners are required to have an adequate number of life jackets on board and have their safety equipment in working condition. When an accident occurs, it should be immediately reported if:
- The accident led to the death or disappearance of a person;
- The accident resulted in injuries requiring medical assistance beyond first aid;
- The property damage exceeds $500.
Boat owners should file a written report to the California Department of Boating and Waterways within 48 hours following an accident that resulted in injury or death and within 10 days if the accident resulted only in property damage. Boat owners or operators should also provide their names, addresses, and vessel registration numbers to the other involved parties.
Contact John M. O'Brien & Grant Zehnder - Boating Disaster Lawyers
If you or a loved one were badly injured in a boating accident in Sacramento, Elk Grove, or anywhere in the state of California, contact a boating accident attorney at the O'Brien & Zehnder Law Firm for experienced and dedicated legal representation. Call today for a free case evaluation. Our firm is devoted to helping injured persons and their families obtain a full financial recovery following a traumatic accident.
"We handle all of our cases the same way, it's on a contingency, which means we don't get paid for all the work that we do until we've resolved the case to our client's satisfaction."