While most of us can’t help but be aware of the frightening statistics relative to drunk driving and its horrendous risks, many of us don’t consider the dangers of operating boats while “buzzed.” For a great many people, alcoholic beverages are so much a part of summer fun that they would no more think of stepping onto a boat for a pleasure cruise without beer or a pitcher of martinis than without towels or bathing suits. As those who have been injured in boating accidents can testify, however, the delights of boating while inebriated are more than outweighed by the miseries that result from boating while intoxicated. How many individuals have to be maimed, paralyzed, or killed for boaters to take drunk boating seriously?
Boating Accidents Should Be Reported Immediately
If you have had the misfortune of being injured while boating in an accident that is not your fault, especially if the boater responsible for your harm appeared to be intoxicated, your first job is to get to safety and receive any necessary medical care. Your second priority should be reaching out to a well-reputed, experienced trial attorney. It is bad enough that you have suffered physical injury, pain and trauma, and possibly permanent disability — you should not have to suffer the outrageous burden of bearing the costs of the accident alone. By engaging the services of a capable, committed personal injury attorney, you ensure that you will receive:
- Individualized personal attention
- Strong legal investigative work
- Skilled insurance negotiations and/or sharp litigation
- Careful accumulation and review of all medical and accident reports
- Prompt responses to your questions and concerns
- Realistic evaluation of damages you may claim
The Facts Speak for Themselves
Rhode Island, though the smallest state, and not really an island, is one in which a sizable proportion of the population, not to mention a large number of visitors, enjoy fishing, boating, swimming, and water sports. According to the 2016 U.S. Coast Guard and U.S. Department of Homeland Security report, there were almost 4,500 accidents involving recreational boats that year in U.S. waters, accidents that resulted in almost 3,000 injuries and over 700 deaths. While boater inexperience and lack of instruction play a large part in boating fatalities, negligence and recklessness are the most frequent cause of boating accidents.
One of the top five factors contributing to boating accidents is alcohol. By and large, it is not commercial vessels that account for most boating accidents. As a matter of fact, eight out of every 10 boaters who drown were traveling in vessels less than 21 feet long.
You Need an Aggressive Personal Injury Attorney Who Specializes in Boating Accidents
If you have suffered serious injury, or have lost a loved one to wrongful death, as the result of an inattentive, reckless, and/or drunk boater, it is essential that you seek the services of an experienced accident attorney with a strong track record of success to ensure that you receive all the compensation you deserve for your medical care, rehabilitation, pain and suffering and lost wages. If you yourself are tempted to drink while operating a boat, don’t take the chance of turning a pleasant outing into a tragedy or risk that someone else out enjoying Rhode Island’s waterways may soon be filing a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit against you. If you have been injured in a boating accident, contact a boating accident attorney, like William M. Kolb.