The U.S. Coast Guard and U.S. Department of Homeland Security reported over 4000 recreational boating accidents in the U.S. in 2012. These accidents collectively resulted in $38 million dollars in property damage, 3000 injuries, and 600 fatalities. Failure of the operator to pay proper attention, inexperience, improper lookout, failure of machinery or equipment, and excessive speed are the top five reasons why these accidents took place. However, among all of these causes, alcohol use is still a leading factor in recreational boating accidents in the U.S.
Admiralty law protects individuals who happen to get into accidents in U.S. navigable waters. Individuals and their loved ones who have sustained injuries or suffered a wrongful death due to recreational boater negligence often elect to contact an admiralty lawyer in order to seek compensation or reimbursement for damages and losses.
Boating accidents, like car accidents, can result in impact injuries that can lead to costly medical bills, lost wages from missed time on the job, and long-term rehabilitation expenses. Traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, and internal injuries can be difficult to treat. Traumatic brain injuries can be especially dangerous because they are not always diagnosed at the time of the accident. Memory loss, mood swings, sleep problems, and difficulty concentrating are all symptoms of mild traumatic brain injury, which can severely interfere with an individual’s ability to enjoy life and work. Spinal cord injuries and other internal injuries can lead to changes in lifestyle that are costly as well, if not death.