Maryland Boat Accident Attorneys Tenaciously
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We Work To Get You Outstanding Results And Maximum Compensation If You Were Injured In Aboating Accident
The reckless behavior of some boaters can result in serious accidents and injuries for safe boat enthusiasts. With different rules depending on the location of waterways, it’s easy to become confused about how to handle the aftermath of a boat crash. Our attorneys at Mallon & McCool, LLC are knowledgeable about the various regulations of area waters and can help you determine and obtain the ideal outcome for your case. We have experience handling boating accident cases in Baltimore County, Howard County, Harford County, Anne Arundel County, Carroll County, Prince George’s County and throughout Maryland.
What Causes Boating Accidents?
There are two primary types of boating crashes, those involving recreational vessels and those involving commercial boats. Because such boats often share the same waterways, recreational boaters can be injured by commercial boats and vice versa. The top causes of boating accidents are:
Operator inattention – Boat operators who become distracted frequently cause crashes. Operator’s who are not paying attention may be unable to quickly maneuver out of danger or recognize sudden risks. The unpredictability of water and other boaters add to accident dangers.
Passenger/skier behavior – Water skiers and passengers who act recklessly can spell trouble for themselves and boat operators. Passengers often cause accidents by obstructing the operator’s view, skiing carelessly or not staying seated when appropriate.
Operator inexperience – Operator inexperience is the leading cause of boating accidents nationwide. Accidents often result from operator’s and passengers who are uneducated about boating laws and regulations, navigation rules, trailering and what to do in an emergency. Such inexperience can lead to boating accidents or make matters worse should an emergency occur.
Weather – Mother Nature can be unpredictable. On the water, inclement weather such as rain storms and heavy wind can lead to overturned boats, boater injuries and boating crashes. Boaters who fail to take safety precautions for poor weather and do not have proper emergency plans in place contribute to weather-related accidents.
Equipment Failure – Like any vehicle, boats must have proper working equipment in order to operate and safely cohabitate with other boats. Malfunctioning or broken equipment can result in serious crashes. Boaters should properly maintain their boat and repair any damage to avoid equipment-involved boating crashes.
Failure to yield – Whether operators misunderstand navigational rules or become distracted, failing to yield is a top cause of crashes.
Reckless operation – Reckless activities by boaters and passengers commonly cause accidents. Types of reckless behavior include: allowing passengers to ride on the bow, transom or gunwales of the watercraft, intentionally splashing other watercraft, driving too close to other boats, racing or jumping a wake in the vicinity of another watercraft while on a personal watercraft.
Congested waters/hazardous waters – Many times, boating accidents occur on congested waterways when numerous boats are on the water. Too many boats make it more difficult to maneuver your vessel, react to dangers and get out of harm’s way. Holidays and weekends are some of the most frequent times for boating accidents.
Excessive speed – Boats that are moving too fast are a common cause of accidents. Modern boats and watercrafts have the ability to travel at excessive speeds. Boat operators travelling at high rates of speed make it more difficult to stop, recognize dangerous objects and spot other boaters. Speeding on the waterways is reckless and can cause serious accidents and injuries.
Alcohol use – Boaters must abide by the same laws as roadway drivers when it comes to alcohol impairment. Like car drivers, boat operators cannot have a blood alcohol concentration exceeding .08. When operators are impaired, their reactions to danger can be slower and they are more likely to strike other boaters. If you or someone you love was injured by a drunk boater, contact our office for aggressive legal representation. We fight to hold negligent boaters accountable for their actions.
Overloading – All vessels have a maximum weight capacity or number of people that can safely be carried. Disregarding capacity rules and overloading boats can lead to boater injuries and deaths. In many cases, there is not enough safety equipment on boats with too many passengers.
In 2012, there were 4515 recreational boating accidents in the United States that injured 3,000 people. Of those accidents, 651 people were killed. Maryland ranks among the top ten states with the most recreational boating accidents. Boating crashes frequently result in:
An enjoyable boating trip can turn disastrous when you or a family member are hit or injured by another boater. The accident claim adjudication process can overwhelm victims who are trying to recover from physical and emotional distress. At Mallon & McCool, LLC, we understand the frustration that comes with negligent boaters and dismissive insurance companies. Our Maryland boat accident attorneys ensure your claim is skillfully handled and negligent parties are held accountable.
What Should I Do After a Boating Accident?
Maryland is home to hundreds of waterways, including creeks, rivers, lakes and bays. Two of the most well-known bodies of water are the Port of Baltimore and Chesapeake Bay. The Port of Baltimore is a regular link for international import and export. The port is also a popular destination for cruises.
Baltimore waterways also encompass inner harbors frequented by families for swimming, boating and recreational water sports. Specific rules apply for operators during and after a boating accident on Maryland waterways. These rules include:
Stop and help – Federal law requires the operator of a boat to provide assistance to any individual in danger in the water.
Provide identification – The operator of any boat involved in an accident must stop and provide identification to other operators.
Issue an accident report – An accident report must be made to the Maryland Natural Resources Police within 48 hours if:
- A death occurs
- A person loses consciousness or requires medical treatment beyond first aid
- A person disappears from a vessel.
Issue a damage report – If no injuries or deaths occurred, accidents must be reported to the state within 10 days if damage to vessels totals more than $2,000.
Taking the proper steps following a boat crash is essential. Knowing what to do and where to start can be challenging as you deal with the effect of your injuries. Mallon & McCool, LLC help you determine the right actions to take after a boating accident. We clearly explain your options and fight to help you recover maximum compensation for your injuries and suffering.
Boating Accident Attorneys Provide Strong Legal Representation Throughout The Baltimore Metropolitan Area, Baltimore County, Prince George’s County, Washington D.C., Howard County, Harford County, Anne Arundel County, Carroll County, And All Surrounding Areas
A serious accident involving a water vessel is never expected. It’s normal to feel bewildered by the rules and laws you must follow after a boating accident. Mallon & McCool, LLC offers our clients concise legal advice and assists them in getting back on their feet. Let us help you recover from your boating accident. Call us 24-hours a day at (800) 918-8872 or contact us online to schedule your free consultation.