Boating Accidents

Morrow & Sheppard are privileged to represent injured persons who suffer serious injuries as the result of boating accidents.

Please click here for a free, confidential consultation to discuss your legal rights before they are jeopardized by a corporation, employer, or insurance company.

Common boating accident injuries include (1) pleasure craft accidents; (2) products liability; (3) boat collisions and allisions; and (4) cruise ship accidents.

Pleasure Craft Accidents

A pleasure craft is a recreational or sportsman’s boat or other floating transport vehicle. They are typically motorized but include certain sailing vessels. These watercraft are often used on lakes, ponds, or rivers.

Unfortunately, a weekend at the lake sometimes turns into tragedy. In 2012, recreational boating accidents accounted for 651 deaths, 3000 injuries, and approximately $38 million dollars in property damage. Most if not all of these accidents were preventable.

Many times, accidents involving pleasure craft occur because of a product defect or the negligence of another person or company. In such cases, the injured persons and their families may be entitled to compensation from the product manufacturer or responsible party.

According to the United States Coast Guard, common reportable boating accidents include:

  • Grounding, capsizing, sinking, or flooding/swamping
  • Falls in or overboard from a vessel
  • Persons ejected from a vessel
  • Fires or explosions that occur while underway and while anchored, moored, or docked if the fire resulted from the vessel or vessel equipment.
  • Water-skiing accidents or other mishaps involving towable devices
  • Collision with another vessel or object
  • Striking a submerged object
  • A person struck by a vessel, propeller, propulsion unit, or steering machinery
  • Carbon monoxide exposure
  • Electrocution due to stray current related to a vessel
  • Casualties while swimming from a vessel that is not anchored, moored, or docked.
  • Casualties where natural causes served as a contributing factor in the death of an individual but the determined cause of death was drowning.
  • Casualties from natural phenomena such as interaction with marine life (i.e. leaping sturgeon causes casualty to person) and interaction with nature (i.e. mountain side falls onto vessel causing casualties).
  • Casualties where a person falls off an anchored vessel.
  • Casualties that result when a person departs an anchored, disabled vessel to make repairs, such as unfouling an anchor or cleaning out the intake of a jet-propelled vessel.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a boating or pleasure craft accident, the maritime and personal injury lawyers at Morrow & Sheppard can help. Please call us or click here for a free, confidential consultation.

Boating Products Liability

Every year, numerous pleasure craft products are sold that have dangerous designs, manufacturing, or warnings. Recent examples can be found here.

These defects involve things like throttle and shift control, ventilation, labeling, fuel systems, exhaust systems, electrical issues, and safety lighting.

Because product defect accidents are so catastrophic, injured parties and their families are often entitled to bring strict “products liability” claims that require a lower burden of proof.

Ship Collisions & Allisions

A collision is when two moving vessels strike each other. An allision is similar, but refers to a collision where one of the two vessels is stationary.

A collision or allision can result in chemical spills, property damage, and personal injuries. These claims are serious and often require an attorney who handles maritime cases. If you believe you may have such a claim, please contact us as soon as possible to preserve your legal rights.

Cruise Ship Accidents

Sadly, many family cruise vacations have been tragically ruined when cruise companies cut corners on safety to maximize profit. The result can be unnecessary illness, personal injuries, or even death. These cases are serious and may involve thorny jurisdiction and liability issues.

If you or a loved one has been injured in connection with a boating or maritime incident, the maritime and personal injury lawyers at Morrow & Sheppard can help. Please call us or click here for a free, confidential consultation.

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