Spring is here, and people are jumping up and down to get on the water. While boating is arguably one of the most fun warm-weather activities, it can come with certain risks. In this blog post, we'll discuss how to stay safe while on the water this spring and summer. We'll also address some frequently asked questions about boating accidents.
What Are Some Common Causes of Boating Accidents?
Boating accidents can be caused by various forms of negligence and unsafe practices. Some of the most common causes include:
- Operating a boat under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Excessive speeding
- Reckless operation
- Distracted boating
- Poor lighting on boats, buildings, or other objects on the waterway
- Negligent boat maintenance
- Inexperienced boat operators
- Failure to comply with Arizona boating laws
- Lack of warning signage or incorrect signage
- Debris and other objects in the waterway
What Steps Should I Take Following a Boating Accident?
The steps you take after a boat accident are similar to steps you should take after a car accident. What you decide to do after a collision on the water can be the difference in life or death. Your decision may also impact your potential boating accident claim in the future. After a boat crash, take these steps:
- Check on all parties - Ensure you and other parties involved are safe; if medical attention is needed, call for it urgently
- Move your boat if it's safe to do so - If it's safe and possible to do so, prepare your boat for travel and proceed to the safety of the shore
- Gather necessary information - Get the names, addresses, and phone numbers of all parties involved
- Check for eyewitnesses - Get the names and contact information of any passengers and eyewitnesses who saw the boat accident
- Don't forget this information - Get the registration or identification number of the vessels involved in the accident
- Exchange insurance details - Provide your insurance company information and policy numbers to those involved; ensure you get their information, too
- Gather evidence to help your claim - If it's safe to do so, get photographs of the accident and any damages. Even if you don't believe you'll file a claim, get evidence in case facts change down the road.
- Get medically examined - See a doctor. Even if you “feel fine” following the accident, know that some severe and/or chronic injuries may not be evident for days after an accident has occurred
What Can I Do to Take Steps to Avoid Boat Accidents?
The best way to avoid an accident is to practice safe boating from the beginning. Every time you get in the water, take steps to make sure you, your passengers, and your fellow boaters are safe. This list of tips is a good place to start when it comes to understanding boating safety:
- Never operate a boat while alcohol or drug-impaired
- Always wear life jackets and make sure your passengers do, too
- Participate in a boating safety course and review safety measures regularly
- Be aware of Arizona and New Mexico boating laws and follow them
- Pay caution to and around the boat propeller– ensure no one enters or exits the boat while the engine is on
- Keep your safety equipment aboard, including flares, life jackets, fire extinguishers, and boat lights
- Know about the weather conditions before you take your boat out on the water
When Should I Call a Boating Accident Lawyer in Arizona?
Boating accidents can be very serious – whether you're at fault or have suffered damages due to the negligence of someone else, you should reach out to a boating accident lawyer to schedule a free initial consultation to review the specifics of your case. Serious boating accidents may cause a slew of losses, from huge medical bills to property damage and more. Don't leave your recovery or liability to chance. Call our boat lawyers today to schedule your free case review. You can reach us at (602) 345-1818 or fill out our online form here.
Know that this blog and all other forms of content on our website are intended to provide general information only. It should not be a substitute for actual legal advice. We recommend that you contact a personal injury lawyer about the specific facts of your case.