Godwin, Morris, Laurenzi & Bloomfield, P.C.

Safety equipment is critical in reacting to boating accidents

Tennessee has many lakes, streams and rivers that play host to a large population of boating enthusiasts. Unfortunately, boating accidents account for many injuries and deaths each year. In many instances, where a person is killed or injured by negligent boating operations, a monetary recovery for the victim or for a deceased victim's family may be possible. The interplay of federal and state laws makes it necessary, however, that a claim be handled by an attorney with experience in such claims.

There are several different reasons for the occurrence of boating accidents. Operating a boat under the influence is one cause that accounts for many such accidents. Other causes involve operator error, which often consists of careless and negligent operation. Boats must be equipped with the necessary safety equipment. The U.S. Coast Guard reports that a majority of drowning accidents could have been avoided if the boat had been equipped with safety jackets and other safety equipment.

To avoid the dangers of a boating accident, the skipper of the vessel should make sure that all passengers are well-versed in safety procedures. They should be briefed on the location of life jackets, first aid supplies and fire extinguishers. Additionally, communications equipment should be identified and passengers should be taught the basics.

The boat operator should also familiarize the passengers with the use of other safety items, such as how to implement flares and how to react in an emergency. Passengers who go on boating trips in Tennessee should also be familiar with the recommended protocols when there is a person overboard. Sailing enthusiasts should take sailing safety courses to learn all of the procedures for preventing boating accidents and for responding to one after it has occurred. When one does fall victim to a boating accident caused by negligence, it is important to consult with an experienced maritime attorney that regularly handles such cases.

Source: cruisingworld.com, "Easy Ways To Put Safety First", Dave Gerber, Jan. 6, 2016

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Godwin, Morris, Laurenzi & Bloomfield, P.C.
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