There’s nothing better than a nice relaxing Saturday afternoon out on the lake or at the beach on your boat or Jet Ski with the sunshine on your smiling face and the wind blowing through your hair. Who couldn’t enjoy a nice adventurous and relaxing summer day on the water like that? While spending time on the water whether you’re swimming, kayaking, pedal boating, wake boarding, paddle boarding, sailing, or hopping wakes on your Jet Ski, it’s important to remember that accidents can and often do happen out on the water and sometimes boaters incur serious or fatal injuries due to intoxicated boaters and other boater negligence. It’s important to be aware of the relevant laws and the protection the law provides to you and your family in the event that someone is injured or killed on the water due to someone else’s fault. It’s also vital to know that a Charlotte boating accident lawyers at Biazzo & Panchenko Law — can help you pursue damages for any medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, loss of consortium or other compensable damages that you may incur from a boating accident.
Boating and Jet Ski accidents frequently occur as a result of speeding, alcohol and drug use, and collisions such as with other watercraft or fixed structures and negligent entrustment and running aground. Most of the aforementioned common causes of boating accidents could have been avoided if boaters heeded the advice of their “Boat Education Course”. Yes, in North Carolina you need a boating license to operate a vessel on NC waterways. It can be obtained by completing a “Boating Education Course” – HERE.
Boating and Jet Ski accident injuries can often be severe given the lack of physical protection provided by boats and Jet Skis to riders and passengers and a lack of seat belts or other safety features on boats and Jet Skis. As you would expect, it’s always important to know where responsibility for a boating accident lies. The legal principle of contributory negligence generally applies to all personal injury cases in North Carolina. Basically, if a personal injury plaintiff is found to be just 1% at fault for causing their own injuries, it is a complete bar to the plaintiff receiving any compensation from other parties who are responsible for causing their injuries. For more information, check out Biazzo Panchenko Law’s CONTRIBUTORY NEGLIGENCE BLOG. However, Federal Maritime Law is applicable in many North Carolina personal injury cases with injuries arising on the water. Especially, when those injuries occur out on the ocean or on other navigable waters that are capable of being used for interstate or foreign commerce, such as bodies of water the connect two or more states. Unlike North Carolina tort law, Federal maritime law typically applies the “comparative fault” principle, so that an injured party’s damages are typically reduced by the percentage of their own fault contributed to causing the injuries if the injured party is found to be partially responsible for causing their own injuries.
It’s important to remember that anytime people are involved in a boating accident, that they are required by law to stop and to provide assistance to the other people involved in the accident, such as other boaters and passengers, (unless doing so would put those attempting to provide assistance in danger). After you have provided any necessary assistance to other people involved in your accident, you should exchange contact and insurance information with the other parties involved and take pictures of any damage to your watercraft, damage to the other watercraft involved and any physical injuries that you, your passengers or other people involved in the accident may have incurred. Next you should report the boating accident to the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission (NCWRC) by calling (800)-662-7137 when the boating accident resulted in the loss of life or injury requiring medical treatment, or if a person is left unconscious or left disabled for 24 hours, if the actual physical damage to property (including watercraft) is in excess of $2,000 and if a person disappears from a watercraft under circumstances that indicate death or bodily injury. We recommend that you always file an NCWRC report so that you may utilize the report to assist you in processing a boating accident insurance claim. The form can be found at www.ncwildlife.org. Finally, seek all necessary medical treatment that you or your passengers may require and contact a North Carolina boating accident lawyer or a North Carolina Jet Ski accident lawyer at the soonest stage possible.
We strongly encourage you to seek the advice of a licensed North Carolina Personal Injury Attorney at the earliest stage possible after any boating accident, Jet Ski Accident, Kayaking accident, paddle boarding accident, swimming accident, etc., where you, a loved one, or a friend has been injured due to the fault of someone else. At Biazzo & Panchenko Law, we are prepared to negotiate a settlement for you or file a lawsuit to pursue your case through a jury verdict if warranted, to obtain the compensation you deserve. Contact Biazzo & Panchenko Law today to schedule your free Personal Injury consultation today. This blog is not to be construed as legal advice.