Boating Accident Lawyer in Queens, NY
New York State has more than 7,500 lakes, ponds, and reservoirs and over 70,000 miles of rivers and streams. Boating on these waterbodies can take the form of canoes, kayaks, personal watercraft, sailboats, and motorboats. In 2021, there were more than 439,500 registered boats in New York, which includes only motorized vessels.
Unfortunately, many boaters in New York do not follow boating safety rules. That often leads to boating accidents that cause serious injuries and sometimes fatal injuries. New York had 192 reported boating accidents and 118 injuries in 2021, including 18 fatal accidents, according to the state Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation. Nine of New York’s boating fatalities in 2021 involved non-motorized watercraft.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a boating accident, your injuries may have caused you to miss work and feel like you’ll never get back on your feet.
As your medical bills pile up, you may experience financial stress. You may feel overwhelmed and exhausted. If your injuries were caused by someone else’s negligence, you may have a legal right to demand compensation for your medical expenses and other losses.
Talk to Our Lawyers About a Queens Boating Accident
During this difficult time, our boating accident lawyers can help you file a boating accident insurance claim and seek a settlement. If another boater’s negligence caused the accident that injured you, our attorneys at The Tadchiev Law Firm are ready to help you seek full boating accident compensation for your injuries and loss of income.
At The Tadchiev Law Firm, P.C., our Queens personal injury lawyers fight for the rights of New Yorkers whose lives have been devastated by preventable accidents caused by the carelessness or negligence of others.
We have earned our reputation as aggressive negotiators and skilled trial lawyers. We know how to stand up to insurers who deny legitimate claims.
To learn more about how a Queens boat accident lawyer can help after a boating accident, contact us today by phone or online. We offer a free consultation. There are no fees unless we recover compensation for you.
Common Boating Accidents
The U.S. Coast Guard says a reportable boating accident involves a death, a missing person, personal injury, property damage, or total loss of the vessel.
Examples of boating accidents include:
- Grounding, capsizing, sinking, or swamping
- Falls overboard
- Being ejected from a boat
- Fire or explosions caused by the boat or boat equipment
- Water Skiing accident
- Collision with another boat or object
- Striking a submerged object
- Being struck by a propeller or propulsion unit
- Carbon monoxide exposure
- Electrocution related to a boat
Common Boating Accident Injuries
The leading cause of death in boating accidents is falling overboard and drowning. Falling into the water during cold weather is particularly dangerous. Immersion in cold water can quickly lead to death. Even near-drowning caused by prolonged submersion in water can cause traumatic brain injury due to oxygen deprivation.
Many other injuries suffered in boating accidents are caused by the blunt-force impact of a collision.
Common boating accident injuries include:
- Head injuries
- Broken bones
- Neck injures
- Back injuries
- Spinal injuries
- Internal organ injuries
- Cuts and bruises
Common Causes of Boating Accidents
Boaters impaired by alcohol and drugs cause of significant share of fatal boating accidents in New York. Between 2005 and 2021, intoxication was found to be the primary contributing factor in 76 boating fatalities, 21.8% of all boating deaths, including four in 2021, according to the Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation.
Various types of careless and reckless behavior can lead to potentially deadly mishaps on the water.
Some common causes of boating accidents include:
- Operator inattention
- Operator inexperience
- Failure to keep a proper lookout
- Excessive speed
- Sharp turns
- Violation of navigation rules
- Inadequate onboard navigation lights
- Obstructed vision
- Overloading a vessel
- Horseplay by boat occupants or skiers
- Ignition of fuel vapors
- Machinery failure
- Equipment failure
- Hazardous waters
Who Is Liable for Injuries in a Boating Accident?
When a boating accident happens, anyone who has been injured has the right to seek compensation for their injuries and losses if someone else’s negligence or recklessness caused the accident.
Typically, a boating accident will have been the responsibility of the:
- Boat operator
- Boat owner
- Boat manufacturer or boat equipment manufacturer
- Boat mechanics
- Boat rental company
In most cases, the person who assumes the role of piloting a boat is responsible for what happens on the vessel. On a large vessel, there may be several activities going on at once. Careless or reckless acts may take place outside of the operator’s view or knowledge.
If an accident occurs because of a mechanical, structural, or equipment failure on the boat, the manufacturer, rental company, or a maintenance service vendor may be liable.
A rental company would be responsible for ensuring the boats it provides customers are fully seaworthy. A manufacturer could be susceptible to a product liability claim if there was a design or manufacturing flaw that the maker knew or should have known about that made the boat unsafe.
What To Do if You Get into a Boating Accident
If you are responsible for a boat that has become involved in a boating accident, there are steps you need to take as promptly and as safely as you can. They include:
- Take care of passengers and the boat. Make sure everyone on the boat is present and accounted for and is wearing a life jacket. If anyone has fallen overboard, help the person overboard get back onto the boat if possible. Check to determine whether anyone aboard other vessels involved needs assistance and help them if you can. Take stock of any injuries – including your own – and assign someone to render first aid. If possible, shut down engines and drop anchor. Stay where you are to deal with the situation at hand.
- Summon help. Call 911 if you have cell reception or make a distress call on channel 16 if you’re using a VHF radio. You must report a New York boating accident to law enforcement authorities if it has caused the death or disappearance of a person or an injury that required more than first aid.
- Gather information. Get the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of everyone on the boat, as well as other boat operators involved in the accident. Get the registration or identification number of vessels involved in the accident and insurance company names and insurance policy numbers of other boats or boat operators. In all boating accidents, parties are required to exchange information. If the other party cannot be located or if they are incapable of receiving such information, the accident must be reported to law enforcement as soon as possible.
- If possible, take photographs of the damage to the boats, obstacles in the water that played a role in the accident, and the location of the accident.
- Report the accident. New York law requires the owner or operator of a boat to report an accident in writing (complete a form) to New York State Parks within five days of the accident if the accident caused injury, death, or the disappearance of a person or $1,000 or more of property damage.
- Contact your insurer. Once you are safely ashore, inform your insurance company of the accident. Do not exaggerate or downplay any injuries. Decline to record a statement, if asked.
Contact an Experienced NY Boating Accident Lawyer
If you have suffered a personal injury, the death of a loved one, or significant property damage because of someone else’s recklessness or negligence on a boat, personal watercraft, or another marine vessel in New York waters, you may have the right to seek compensation for your losses. Contact a boat accident lawyer at The Tadchiev Law Firm, P.C., in Queens today.
Our Queens boat injury lawyers advocate for people who have been injured in boating accidents due to the negligence of others. When you work with us, you can be assured that you are in good hands. We know how stressful a boating accident and its aftermath can be.
We are ready to do everything we can to take the pressure off of you. You can rely on us to provide you with personalized attention as we pursue full compensation on your behalf.
Call us or reach out online now for your free initial legal consultation.