According to statistics compiled by the U.S. Coast Guard, there were 4,588 recreational boating accidents last year, resulting in 758 deaths, 3,081 injuries and property damage totaling approximately $52 million.

Owner and operator negligence is to blame for a significant number of recreational boating accidents. In fact, the U.S. Coast Guard points to the following factors as the top five primary contributing factors:

  • Operator inattention
  • Improper lookout
  • Operator inexperience
  • Excessive speed
  • Machinery failure

It is important for boat owners and operators to take safety seriously. From maintaining a vessel properly to maneuvering it carefully, recreational boaters must be diligent about preventing accidents.

When you hit the water this summer, keep in mind these ten safety tips:

  • Always wear a life jacket and insist that your passengers do the same
  • Take charge of your safety and the safety of your passengers
  • Never operate a boat while drinking alcohol
  • Take a boating safety course
  • Follow boating safety recommendations and navigational rules
  • Maintain a safe speed and a careful lookout
  • Check the weather forecast
  • Get a free vessel safety check from the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary
  • Install a carbon monoxide detector
  • File a float plan every time you head out

Boat owners and operators who act negligently may be liable under maritime law for any injuries or deaths they cause. Latti & Anderson LLP has obtained significant verdicts and settlements for victims of recreational boating accidents, including $440,000 for a man who was injured when a boat hit a standing swell too fast, and $307,500 for a woman who was injured when a boat struck a couple of wakes at full speed.

Have you been a victim of boating negligence? Contact a Boston maritime attorney today to discuss your case during a free consultation.

Latti & Anderson LLP – Boston maritime trial lawyers