Boating can be a fun activity, especially when the weather is right. However, it is important to still consider your safety even while going out for a fun day on the water. In 2014, according to the U.S. Coast Guard, there were about 4,064 accidents that resulted in 610 deaths and 2,678 injuries. To help prevent a disaster from happening to you or others, it is important to understand why these accidents happen.
Below are some of the most common reasons why boating accidents happen:
1.Distracted or inattentive operator: It is crucial for boat operators to always maintain constant awareness of the boat’s surroundings, including the weather, unsafe conditions, or nearby objects. Given the unpredictability of conditions at sea, being prepared and aware of any warning signs can help everyone on board stay safe.
2.Not looking out: It is imperative for a proper lookout to be assigned to watch for threats and hazards. Boating accidents are often caused by the lack of a designated lookout on board.
3.Inexperienced operators: This is the third most common cause of boating accidents, according to the U.S. Coast Guard’s annual report. Due to lack of experience, boat operators often lack the necessary understanding of boating, rules of navigation, and how to prepare or handle emergency situations.
4.Speeding: Everyone knows maintaining a safe speed is critical on the roadway, but it is also important to operate your boat at a safe speed. Not doing so will prevent you from being able to appropriately react to dangers, causing collisions with other boats or vessels.
5.Equipment failure: Maintaining your boat is important for its safe operation, so this responsibility should never be neglected. Make the necessary checks and always ensure your boat is in good condition.
6.Violating navigational rules: Just as there are rules on the road, there are rules in the water. Such rules are put in place for your safety and violating them puts you and everyone else on board at risk for an accident.
7.Impaired operation: If you have been drinking or using drugs, you should never operate a boat. This can result in death or serious injury.
8.Dangerous waters: Water conditions can quickly change and, while some circumstances cannot be anticipated, there are often signs that indicate a change in conditions. Boat operators need to vigilantly monitor these signs.
9.Weather: You cannot change the weather, but you can and should always check weather conditions and forecasts before heading out. If there is a weather alert, never ignore it.
10.The force of waves or wakes: The force of a large wave or a wake, which is the disturbance of water caused by the passage of the boat’s hull, is another common cause of accidents.
Colorado Springs Personal Injury Lawyer
If you were injured in an accident, you need to contact the skilled personal injury team at Clawson & Clawson, LLP. Our Colorado Springs attorneys have more than 120 years of collective experience, which we will use to your advantage to fight for full and fair compensation.
We serve clients in Colorado Springs, Pueblo, Parker, and Denver. Contact us today at (719) 602-5888 to request a free consultation.