Ward Smith PLLC Articles U.S. Boating Accident Facts

U.S. Boating Accident Facts

By Ward Smith PLLC  Jun. 4, 2013 11:01a

Boating accidents are an unfortunate fact, especially in coastal states like Washington with miles and miles of waterways for use by boaters and their passengers. In 2012, the U. S. Coast Guard reported 4,515 recreational boating accidents which resulted in 651 fatalities, 3,000 injuries, and property damage estimated at $38 million across the nation. Of those who died in these accidents, 71 percent drowned and 85 percent of those who drowned were not wearing lifejackets. Contributing factors in these accidents included operator inattention, operator inexperience, improper lookout, mechanical failure, and excessive speed. One of the main causes in fatal accidents was the consumption of alcohol. Those types of watercraft most commonly involved in such accidents included open motorboats (47 percent), personal watercraft (19 percent), and cabin motorboats (15 percent).

The five primary boating accident types included collision with another recreational vessel, flooding or swamping, collision with a fixed object, grounding, and skier accidents. The highest number of injuries and deaths from boating accidents typically occur in the summer months. The Coast Guard reported that the state of Washington had 105 boating accidents in 2012. 28 of these were fatal accidents in which 30 people were killed. In non-fatal accidents, 63 people were injured. The total in damages from these accidents was estimated at $1,195,897. The number of boating accidents in the state in 2012 increased from the years 2010 and 2011.

Personal Injury Firm in Seattle

Boating accidents which occur due to negligence or misconduct may result in personal injury or wrongful death claims against those responsible. Many types of negligence may be the cause of boating accidents, such as drinking or taking drugs while operating a vessel, speeding, not paying attention, ignoring safety precautions, and more. In such cases, the injured or the families of those who have died should consult with an experienced attorney as soon as possible to determine the validity of a potential claim.

Ward Smith, PLLC provides experienced legal representation in the field of personal injury and wrongful death law to those in the Seattle area. The firm's attorneys have more than 50 years of combined experience and have been recognized by Super Lawyers due to their strong track record of success. They handle all types of cases, including those stemming from auto accidents, medical malpractice, unsafe premises, defective consumer products, elder abuse, dog attacks, and more. Contact the firm for a free case evaluation if you believe you have been harmed or have lost a loved one due to the negligence of another party.

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