What Causes Boating Accidents?

Charlotte Injury Lawyer Matt Arnold answers the question: “Why should I hire an attorney to represent me in a personal injury claim instead of handling the claim on my own?”


If you love being on the water, there are plenty of boating opportunities in the area. There are many lakes or various sizes that allow for activities such as fishing, water skiing, sailing, or just relaxing on the water. Although boating is a fun thing to do, it can result in an accident with injuries. Boating accidents can cause serious injuries or fatalities. If you were hurt in a boating accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries.


What Causes Boating Accidents?


Just like car accidents on land, there are many things that could cause a crash with a vessel. Some of the most common causes of boat accidents include:


  • Distracted boating
  • Boating while impaired
  • Inexperience
  • Reckless boating
  • Speeding


Boating requires a degree of knowledge and practice, especially in waters where there are other boats. Distractions are common when boating. The operator must constantly watch for other boats as well as for things that could be in the water. Impairment due to alcohol or drug use can make boating extremely dangerous. Going too fast can lead to accidents or impacts with other boaters or with swimmers or water skiers. Reckless boating happens when a boat operator disregards the rules or laws that are in place on the body of water.


Who is Responsible for Boating Accident Injuries?


When someone causes a boating accident due to negligence, that person is responsible for any injuries and damages they caused. Negligence is the failure to use ordinary care, in this instance, while driving a boat. A boat operator may be negligent if he or she fails to act in a way that most prudent people would act. There are four main parts of a negligence claim including duty of care, breach of duty, causation, and damages. Generally, anyone who pilots a boat has a duty to drive it in a responsible way so as not to cause harm or injury to anyone. A negligent boater breached that duty of care and caused harm to another. There must be actual damages in order to successfully prove negligence.


It is important to note that North Carolina utilizes the contributory negligence principle. If someone is partly negligent for an accident, they cannot recover damages. You can only recover damages when you were not negligent yourself. Therefore, it is extremely important to prove negligence on the part of the responsible party.


What to Do Following a Boating Accident


Boating accidents are often quite dangerous and immediate rescue is required. When a boating accident on public waters results in injuries, loss of life, missing person, or damages of more than $2,000 you must report it to the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission. It is important to seek medical attention immediately. Maintain all medical records and bills. Follow the medical advice of the doctor and contact an attorney as soon as possible. Your lawyer will work to get you the compensation you deserve while you focus on your recovery. The negligent party should pay for your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages caused by the accident.


If you or someone you love was injured in a boating accident, give us a call at Arnold & Smith, PLLC, at (704) 370-2828 to discuss your case today.






The skilled personal injury attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC are dedicated to maximizing the financial recovery and obtaining justice for every personal injury client injured by another party’s negligence. The issues our personal injury clients may be facing include, but are not limited to, slip and fall injuries, wrongful death, product liability, catastrophic injuries, dog bite claims, car and truck accident injuries, motorcycle injuries, traumatic brain injury (TBI), nursing home negligence, spinal cord injury, boating accidents, and defective medical device injury. Our personal injury attorneys understand the devastating impact such an injury can have on a person’s life, and that the effects so often go beyond physical pain and suffering. The personal injury attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC are dedicated to helping clients determine the strength of their claims, and to aggressively pursuing the means necessary to achieve the best possible end result for each client’s particular situation.








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