During the summer in New Jersey and New York, many people enjoy spending time out on the water, whether it is on jet skis, sailboats, or any other kind of watercraft. Similar to car accidents, boating accidents have the potential to be devastating. At Judd Shaw Injury Law, we don’t think you should have to pay out of pocket for maritime injury-related expenses if the accident wasn’t your fault, and our legal team is here to help you gain maximum compensation if you are injured on the water. However, our first concern is assuring you are safe, so here are a few tips to avoid maritime accidents:
Monitor weather and water conditions carefully.
Before heading out on the water, be sure to check weather reports and reports on water conditions. Types of weather that you definitely want to avoid include heavy fog, rain, and strong winds. In these types of conditions, you are putting yourself at risk of getting into a serious accident. While heavy fog and rain can have a substantial effect on your vision while operating a water vehicle, strong winds can cause extremely rough water conditions and place you in a very dangerous situation. If the forecast shows a slight chance of any of these conditions, you should reschedule your trip or return to shore as soon as possible.
Do not operate a boat without a license.
The U.S. Coast Guard reports that a high percentage of boating deaths occur when a driver is not properly informed on boat safety instructions. Some boaters disregard the requirement of having a license to operate a boat, however, boaters in New Jersey and New York must be licensed by law. Without taking an accredited course to gain a license, individuals will lack knowledge and experience of water safety. Abide by the law!
Stick to the speed limit.
Do not be reckless while operating a water vehicle, as you could cause rough water conditions to other boaters and swimmers, which could be considered negligent. Further, if you are driving at high speeds, you are putting yourself and your passengers at risk. Safe boating laws exist for a reason, so do not drive out of control!
Don’t drink and drive!
Boating under the influence is just as serious as driving a vehicle under the influence. Impaired boaters suffer from poor judgment and delayed reaction times—both of which can result in accidents. If you drink and drive, you are not only putting yourself at risk, but everyone else on the water as well. It can be difficult to see a small watercraft or tube in the distance, and it is very easy for a drunk driver to hit someone even if no other boats are in sight.
If you were injured because someone else was behaving negligently on the water, let us fight for you. After a maritime injury, you have enough to deal with already. We know that calling a lawyer and dealing with the legal process may seem intimidating, but it’s our goal to make it easy for you.