If you’re a boating enthusiast, the chances are that you’ve spent a lot of time on the water. You’ve probably witnessed a few boating accidents here and there —because they happen quite often. If this is the case, you could be wondering what causes these accidents and what safety measures you should take during your next boating vacation.
Water accidents are caused by different circumstances, some of which are natural elements that can not be avoided. Others could be due to human error, such as inexperience or negligence leading to drowning. Below is a detailed analysis of how and why boating accidents occur and what legal actions you can take if you or your loved one is a victim. Speak with an Ohio injury attorney as soon as possible.
Boating is the most popular and exciting recreational activity, the antidote for the sweltering heat synonymous with summer. Yet, it also comes with several risks and errors that have contributed to increased deaths on a boat.
Every boater must understand these potential dangers and take risk-mitigating measures to ensure safety. Below are a few notable causes of boating accidents, which are usually tragic.
When a boat overturns while deep into the sea, the experience can prove fatal unless an emergency rescue is conducted immediately. Capsizing usually results from hitting a huge wave while speeding, or it could be due to overloading.
When this happens, the boat occupants could be thrown into the water, increasing the risk of drowning if they weren’t wearing a lifejacket. Since these accidents are inevitable, you could prevent them by maintaining an even weight distribution in the boat and having your life jacket on while in water.
You’d be surprised how much traffic there can be on lakes. You’re not the only one looking to enjoy some recreational time in water; many people also want to escape the unforgiving summer heat. So, it is no surprise that these many water vessels could collide, especially if the drivers are reckless, intoxicated, or inexperienced.
Collisions are the primary cause of fatal boat accidents, according to a report by the United States Coast Guard. Just as you’re likely to collide with another car on a busy highway, the same is possible while you’re out cruising in the water. Often, boaters collide with other watercraft or stationary objects in the sea, and these could be fatal.
Collisions, especially from high-impact speeds, are usually fatal. You could prevent such a tragedy by following boating safety rules, including avoiding drugs and alcohol while operating a watercraft.
Fires and explosions aren’t as common at sea as they’re on roadways, but they still happen and can be tragic. Your boat could explode if it’s not properly fueled or has an electrical issue. In some cases, it’s caused by engine overheating or fuel leaking.
Victims of a boat fire or explosion could succumb to severe burns or damaged respiratory systems after inhaling smoke. Regular boat maintenance is crucial to avoiding these fatalities. Most importantly, ensure no mechanical errors or malfunctions before setting your boat into the water.
Another dangerous scenario often overlooked is exhaustive engine or generator fumes leading to carbon monoxide poisoning. You may not realize you’re poisoned because carbon monoxide is hard to detect, making it a common silent killer on poorly ventilated boats.
Sinking is usually the result of overloading or bad weather. Cruising on rough waters or thunderstorms is naturally dangerous, leading to hypothermia. When large waves swamp a boat, the chances of drowning are usually higher. Observing weather forecasts, parking emergency equipment, and preparing adequately before entering the water ensures you and your loved ones are safe.
If your loved one died in a boating accident in Ohio, you can file for wrongful death and recover damages. Ohio boat owners are not required to carry insurance coverage, so a lawsuit is the most viable option for receiving compensation.
Furthermore, you have up to two years to file a personal injury or wrongful death case according to Ohio statute of limitations laws. If you file a successful lawsuit against the negligent party, you could recover medical expenses for the injuries sustained or, in case of death, funeral costs.
If your spouse was the victim and they succumbed after the accident, you’re entitled to receive compensation for your loss of consortium (adapting to life without your partner). You could also be compensated for the lost income occasioned by the death of your spouse. Other benefits include:
A boating accident in Ohio can be devastating, and the legal process can be complex. That doesn’t mean you should suffer in silence and let the negligent party get away with it.
With a competent personal injury attorney, you could pursue your legal rights and receive justice. Contact us today, and we’ll offer legal guidance and review your case free of charge.
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