Boating Accidents and the Failure to Lookout for Other Boats By Steve Charpentier on June 14, 2016

Male operating a boatBoating is a leisurely activity that allows people to relax and have fun with family and friends. Unfortunately, some boaters fail to give this activity the attention and responsibility it deserves. Operating a boat is no different than driving a vehicle when it comes to safety precautions. Without proper care and attention, a boat has the potential to be a dangerous, or even deadly, vehicle. Every year, boat accidents injure or kill hundreds of people in U.S. waters, with the majority of these accidents involving collisions between two boats. In most cases, these tragic accidents are completely avoidable. Boat accidents caused by the failure to lookout for other boats are common in Melbourne, FL. The personal injury attorneys at Charpentier Law Firm can assist boat accident victims in collecting just compensation for damages.

Practicing Caution when Operating a Boat

Just as there are rules of the road that drivers must follow, there are maritime laws and guidelines set in place to ensure the safety of those on boats and other watercraft. Unfortunately, while roads have clearly marked lanes meant to keep drivers in their proper positions, the water is wide open. Additionally, many boaters are inexperienced and do not know or understand maritime regulations. One of the most basic rules of boating is to be aware of other boats, watercraft, and people on the water. Remaining aware of one’s surroundings is paramount to the safe operation of a boat. Below are some safety tips regarding caution while operating a boat or other watercraft:

  • Do not leave the boat’s steering wheel unattended
  • Make sure at least one person is responsible for being the lookout, meaning they are maintaining a visual and audible scan of surrounding waters
  • Avoid drinking while operating a boat, which can slow the senses and reactionary abilities
  • Avoid any distractions that take the eyes of the boat operator off the water

When proper precautions are taken, there is no reason that boating cannot be an enjoyable and safe activity for all of those on the water.

Proving Liability in Boat Accidents

Keeping a proper lookout while operating a boat is not just a suggestion, but an actual law. Because of this, if a boat accident occurs because of another boater’s failure to maintain a lookout, they can be held liable for the accident. To determine liability in a boat accident involving injury, our attorneys will need to prove the following:

  • One or more boaters involved in the accident failed to maintain a lookout of the water
  • That failure to maintain a lookout played a role in causing the boat accident
  • Injuries and damages were suffered as a result of the boat accident

Our attorneys have a great deal of experience representing cases such as these, and we work with experts in the field to ensure we build the strongest cases for our clients.

Contact Us

If you have been injured as the result of a boat accident that you believe was caused by another boater’s failure to maintain a proper lookout, our personal injury attorneys can help you fight for just compensation. Contact us at your earliest convenience to discuss the details of your accident and injuries.

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Charpentier Law Firm, P.A.

Since 1981, Stephen G. Charpentier has been protecting victims' rights. Mr. Charpentier:

  • Is a recipient of an AV rating, the Martindale-Hubbel® National Law Directory's highest honor
  • Earned Florida Legal Elite status in 2010
  • Handles cases in many practice areas including medical malpractice, auto accidents, and wrongful death

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