Injured in a Boating Accident? San Antonio Maritime Accident Attorneys Can Help
The rivers in and around San Antonio, Texas offer breathtaking views and the perfect boating opportunity for locals and visitors alike. However, with the large number of boats on the water comes the possibility of boating accidents and serious injuries. When boaters operate their watercraft carelessly and without regard to others’ safety, they can cause a serious collision on the water. Moreover, when boat equipment and boat parts are improperly manufactured and designed, they can bring about serious boating accidents.
The San Antonio boating accident lawyers at The Law Offices of George Salinas understand the dangers associated with negligent and careless boat operation. If you have been involved in a serious boating accident and sustained equally serious injuries and damages, you may be eligible to pursue monetary compensation. Our experienced team of litigation attorneys may be able to pursue your case and obtain a good settlement or trial verdict for you.
How Boating Accidents Occur
Any type of boat, from a sailboat to a motorboat, can be involved in an accident on a San Antonio waterway. Boat accidents can also happen in a variety of ways. For example, your boat could strike another watercraft or it could collide with an object in the water, such as a dock. In high speed boating accidents, the boat could actually overturn in the water, causing boat passengers to strike their heads or other body parts directly on the boat – or on something else in the water. Obviously, this can result in serious injuries to everyone who is on board the watercraft.
Injuries Sustained in Boating Accidents
Whenever a boating accident occurs, serious damages and injuries can result. Common types of injuries suffered in boating accidents include:
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBI’s)
- Spinal cord injuries and paralysis
- Soft tissue injuries
- Bone fractures
- Permanent impairment
- Negligent Causes of Boat Accidents
When boaters choose to operate their watercraft, they have a duty to act reasonably and safely. They also have a duty to follow all Texas boating regulations that are applicable to their watercraft. When boaters fail to abide by these regulations and duties and cause a boating accident, they can be subject to both civil and criminal fines and other penalties.
Negligent boat operation can take a variety of forms. Some of the most common examples of negligent, careless, or reckless boat operation include:
- Violating watercraft speed limits
- Operating a watercraft in a no-access area
- Operating a watercraft without the proper license and registration
Operating a boat while intoxicated or while under the influence of an illegal substance or dangerous drug
In particularly egregious cases, the boat operator could be deemed grossly negligent for operating a watercraft with extreme recklessness.
Available damages in a negligent boat accident case may include compensation for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, loss of quality of life, and permanent impairment.
Product Liability Concerns
Boat accidents are not always the result of negligent or intoxicated individuals. In some instances, a boat mechanism or part can lead to the accident and the resulting injuries and damages. Some boat parts, such as steering mechanisms, motors, or rudders are improperly manufactured or designed at the time they are placed into the stream of commerce. Moreover, in some cases, the hazard warning on a piece of boating equipment is too small – or altogether nonexistent.
In any of these cases, the boat (or boat part) manufacturer, designer, or distributor could be named as a defendant in a product liability case. Holding large companies liable can be especially complicated and you need a law firm with the resources to successfully take on a manufacturer.
Boating Under the Influence
Alcohol use is another common cause of boating accidents in San Antonio and across the county. Drunk boating laws in Texas are virtually the same as the state’s drunk driving laws. In Texas, individuals may not operate a vessel or watercraft if they are intoxicated. This offense is known as “boating while intoxicated” – or BWI. The act of “being intoxicated” means that the boat operator is under the influence of drugs or alcohol. A boat operator is deemed intoxicated if he or she is operating a boat with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 percent or more.
Like Texas DWI convictions, BWI convictions can also subject offenders to serious administrative and criminal penalties. In terms of administrative penalties, the state may revoke the boat operator’s license to operate a watercraft. With regard to the criminal penalties, the offending boat operator could be fined or may even be forced to spend some time in jail.
It goes without saying that drunk and drugged boaters are a serious problem on all waterways. Consequently, when these boaters cause accidents, they can also be sued civilly for money damages. An injured boat accident victim may be able to file a personal injury claim or lawsuit directly against the negligent boat operator, seeking monetary compensation for all of the injuries and damages sustained.
The lawyers at The Law Offices of George Salinas can investigate the circumstances of your boating accident and may be able to file a claim or lawsuit on your behalf.
Call a San Antonio Boating Accident Attorney Today for a Free Legal Consultation and Case Evaluation
Boating accidents on have the potential to lead to catastrophic injuries and damages for everyone involved. If you have been injured in a San Antonio boating accident, The Law Offices of George Salinas may be able to assist you with filing your claim or lawsuit and pursuing monetary compensation.
Insurance companies are never on your side at any time, and their adjusters will do everything they can to undermine your right to legal recovery. Our experienced personal injury lawyers can challenge the insurance company, and, if necessary, litigate and try your case to a conclusion.
To schedule a free consultation and case evaluation with a member of our dedicated legal team, please call us today at (210) 225-0909, or contact us online.