California has numerous lakes, rivers and the longest stretch of the Pacific coast in the country. However, with the opportunity for recreational boating and other activities comes the increased risk for accidents and injury. Fast-moving boats and jet skis can cause serious injuries and accidents by capsizing, sinking or colliding with another watercraft or a water skier.
According to the U.S. Coast Guard, in 2015, there were 4,158 boating accidents, resulting in 626 deaths and over 2000 injuries. The vast majority of boating victims drown and 71% of boating accident deaths occur in conjunction with a boating operator who did not receive boating safety instruction. Boating accidents occur for many reasons, but the main causes of these accidents are distracted boating, inexperience, machinery failure, and excessive speed. Like car accidents, drinking and operating a boat can also result in serious injuries or deaths.
Personal injury firm, Jeffrey E. Estes & Associates, APC, represents plaintiffs in San Diego, Orange County, Riverside county, San Bernardino County, Imperial County, and all of Southern California in pursuing full recovery for damages resulting from boating accidents and injuries caused by the negligence of others. Boating accidents are unique because boaters may be subject to maritime law. Having a lawyer who is familiar with this type of law can have a major impact on the outcome of your case. Jeffrey E. Estes & Associates are qualified boating accident lawyers in San Diego, California who can fight for your rights and help you seek the maximum recovery under the law. If you or a loved one has been injured on the water, call toll free 855-290-8080 for legal help.
Holding Negligent Parties Accountable in Boating Accidents in San Diego
Generally, the legal issues associated with boating accidents and injuries are similar to other personal injury claims issues. Questions of negligence and causation determine what if any damages may be recovered by the injured. However, there are other factors that must also be considered. Maritime laws and boating laws are different than the laws of the road. For instance, in San Diego, boaters must respect speed limits when operating boats near swimmers or surfers. Boaters who are operating their boats near coastlines are also required to respect speed limits. Just as in driving, speeding in a boat kills. Boaters may not see swimmers or surfers, resulting in serious propeller accidents.
The age limit to operate a boat also differs from driving. According to the City of San Diego, no person under 12 years of age is permitted to operate a boat. Children between the ages of 16 and 18 must also be accompanied by an adult when operating a boat.
Boats must have proper safety equipment, including floatation devices, safety vests, distress signals, fire extinguishers, and other safety gear. Not having this equipment can result in issues should boaters be involved in accidents. Additionally, boaters must have registration cards and numbers. While many boaters receive proper training in boat operation, a surprising number of people don’t take courses to improve their safety in the water. This can create a situation where boaters are complacent or make mistakes because they simply are not well-versed in safety.
As with other motor vehicle accidents, the driver or operator is not always to blame for the accident. The cause of the injuries may be traced back to faulty boat machinery and equipment. In such a case, the boat manufacturer, or other third parties, may be held responsible for compensation.
The boat accident attorneys at Jeffrey E. Estes & Associates, APC, represent plaintiffs with cases related to the following:
Recreational boating accidents
Jet skiing accidents
Water skiing accidents
Scuba diving accidents
Boating under the influence of drugs or alcohol (BUI)
Whether your claim is large or small, personal injury attorneys Estes and Smith will do whatever it takes to investigate the facts of your case to see whether you are entitled to compensation for your injuries. Clients are only charged if their case is awarded a settlement or verdict, so there are no initial costs involved in pursuing a personal injury claim.
Call for a Free Consultation
If you or a loved one has been involved in a boat injury or other maritime accident, contact an experienced boating accidents lawyer right away. Boating accident victims may face a range of challenges. You may be suffering from serious injuries, be facing a long recovery period, or may be struggling to make ends meet after an accident. The law offers important protections to individuals who have been hurt due to the negligence of another person or party. You may be entitled to receive compensation to cover your medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages. Jeffrey E. Estes & Associates are boating accident lawyers in San Diego, California who fight for the rights of injured individuals. We can help you seek the justice you may deserve under the law. Call our offices, or complete a contact form online to schedule a free consultation. We bill on a contingency basis, which means that you are only billed for our services if we are successful in winning you a recovery.