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Phoenix Boat Accident Lawyer

A boating accident can be a frightening experience, and it can be difficult to know what to do or how to proceed if you are involved in one. Knowing the steps to take after a boating accident could help you save someone’s life, as well as helping you protect your legal rights.

There are over 12,000,000 boats registered in the United States each year that contribute to more than 4,700 recreational boating accidents that take the lives of more than 700 individuals annually. Although boating accidents are not fatal most of the time, accident victims can suffer severe, debilitating injuries ranging from broken bones, traumatic brain injuries, lost limbs and drowning.

The boating accident lawyers at Gerber Injury Law in Arizona have more than 22 years of experience representing clients. We know how to obtain results for clients injured in recreational boating accidents. If you or a loved one has been in a boating accident, contact our attorneys in Peoria, Surprise, Avondale, Phoenix, Mesa or Scottsdale. We may be able to help you recover. Initial consultations with our boat accident lawyers are free.

Why Choose Us?

  • Our lawyers have recovered millions of dollars for our clients.
  • Our attorneys have experience handling many injury types, including catastrophic injuries.
  • Our full-service law firm provides comprehensive care to all injured clients in Arizona.
  • Our lead attorney, Ken Gerber, has years of experience taking cases to trial.
  • Our clients benefit from tailored legal services and individual care.

Do You Need an Attorney?

A boating accident lawyer can help you and your family recover fair compensation during negotiations with an insurance company. An insurer will try to undervalue your accident and injuries to benefit the company’s investors. It will be up to you to defend your rights against an insurance claims adjuster in pursuit of a reasonable settlement. Hiring a lawyer can help you accomplish your goals. A lawyer will know exactly how to handle insurance companies during boating accident claims. If your case needs to proceed to trial, your lawyer can represent you in front of a judge or jury in Arizona.

Injury From a Boating Accident

A collision between two boats or another type of recreational boating accident could cause life-changing personal injuries. Victims can suffer injuries upon impact that are similar to the injuries that can occur in an auto accident, such as concussions and broken bones. The crash may also throw victims overboard, leading to water-related injuries such as drowning or underwater electrocution. If the boat catches on fire, this can cause other significant injuries.

  • Drowning
  • Brain asphyxia (lack of oxygen)
  • Bone fractures
  • Pulled muscles
  • Burn injuries
  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Back and spine injuries
  • Organ and internal injuries
  • Amputations
  • Propeller injuries
  • Scarring and disfigurement
  • Wrongful death

Collisions, slip and falls, lacerations, explosions, electrocution, overboard accidents and many other incidents can cause serious personal injuries in a boating accident in Arizona. As the victim of any type of boating accident injury, or a surviving loved one after a fatal accident, contact Gerber Injury Law for a free legal consultation. We may be able to help you receive full compensation for your damages with aggressive negotiating strategies.

Common Causes of Boating Accidents

Boating accidents can be caused by many different reasons, but alcohol is the leading contributing factor in fatal boating accidents. One out of every seven boating-related deaths is caused by an impaired driver. Other common causes of boating accidents include:

  • Risky behavior
  • Operator error
  • Faulty equipment
  • Poor weather conditions
  • Failure to pay attention to surroundings
  • Reckless or careless operation of the vessel
  • Driving at high speeds
  • Operator inexperience
  • Collision with another boat, underwater object or structure.
  • Negligence

At Gerber Injury Law, we can begin your boating accident claim with an investigation into its cause. If we find a boat owner, operator or another party liable for causing your accident and injuries, we can help you hold that party legally responsible. We are passionate about bringing negligent boat operators to justice on behalf of our clients.

Reporting a Boating Accident

Federal law requires that a boating accident report be filed if, someone is killed, someone is injured badly enough to need medical care beyond basic first aid, there is damage to the vessels or to property that equals or exceeds $2,000, there is a complete loss of a vessel or a vessel is destroyed and if someone disappears from a vessel under circumstances that indicate an injury or death has occurred.

Boating Accident Statistics

  • The Coast Guard counted 4,145 boating accidents in 2018 that caused 633 deaths, 2,511 injuries and approximately $46 million dollars of damage to property.
  • The fatality rate for boating accidents in America is 5.3 deaths per 100,000 registered vessels.
  • 84% of people who died as a result of a boating accident were not wearing a life jacket.
  • Eight out of every ten boaters who drowned were on vessels less than 21 feet.
  • Alcohol use is the leading known contributing factor in fatal boating accidents.
  • 74% of boating deaths occurred on boats where the operator did not receive any boater safety instruction. 18% percent of deaths occurred on vessels where the operator had received boater safety instruction.

Liability for Boating Accidents

Liability for most boating accidents is due in negligence – the same as with liability for car accidents on land. To prevail on a claim in court for negligence, the plaintiff must show that the boat operator failed to operate the boat in a reasonably safe manner and that this failure caused an injury to the plaintiff. The average tort claim in Arizona requires four elements of proof.

  1. Duty of care. An obligation to exercise reasonable care to the plaintiff.
  2. Breach of duty (negligence). A failure to meet the expectations or standards of care.
  3. Causation. A link between the defendant’s negligence and the plaintiff’s injuries.
  4. Damages. Compensable damages suffered by the plaintiff in the accident.

A lawyer from Gerber Injury Law could help you determine and prove fault for your Arizona boating accident. We understand the rules related to injury claims and what evidence an insurance company or courtroom will look for, such as photographs, accident reports, eyewitness statements and medical records. We can help you collect evidence and present a strong claim to damages.

Recoverable Damages

Compensation for your boating accident injuries from the responsible party can include medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, funeral costs and other related damages, but only if a lawsuit is initiated in time.

Boating accidents are somewhat similar to car crashes in that they both happen for some of the same reasons, such as driving while intoxicated, speeding, reckless driving but other types of accidents are unique to boating, like crashing into a submerged object, or capsizing or being struck by the propeller. Injuries can range from a minor cut or bruise to brain damage, paralysis, loss of limbs and even death. Boating injuries can be debilitating and life-altering experiences that often require extensive, expensive, medical treatments that can be devastating to the finances of a victim and their family.

In order to obtain a court award for compensation against a negligent boater you and your attorney must establish the four elements of negligence – which are: duty, breach, causation and actual damages.

Boating accidents are governed both by state laws and also federal laws when an accident occurs in the ocean, adding another layer of complexity to boat accidents in comparison to other types of personal injury or wrongful death cases. Contact a competent attorney who is knowledgeable in these matters – such as the boat accident lawyers at Gerber Injury Law who can guide you through the maze of legal loopholes to pursue, and prove your case in court.

Get Help From a Winning Injury Lawyer

After a boating accident, do your best to obtain information so you or your lawyer can build a claim. Take certain steps in the aftermath of a serious accident, such as collecting information from the other boat’s owner, so you know where to file your claim. If you need assistance collecting evidence or information, contact an attorney.

  • Names, addresses and telephone numbers of the boat operators involved in the accident.
  • Names, addresses and telephone numbers of the passengers involved.
  • Names and contact information of any eyewitnesses who may have witnessed the accident.
  • Record the registration number of any other vessels involved in the accident.
  • Get insurance company names and the insurance policy numbers from anyone involved in the accident.
  • Take photographs of the damage to the boat and the location where the accident occurred.

Boating accident injuries can be as minor as a first degree burn or scrape to a traumatic brain or spinal injury. Unfortunately, some boat accidents can also be fatal. It is important that you contact a personal injury lawyer at Gerber Injury Law as soon as you or a loved one have been seriously hurt or fatally injured in a boating accident.

We Charge No Fees Unless You Win

A skilled Arizona boating accident lawyer is your first line of defense after receiving an injury in a boat accident. Submit an online case review form now or call our offices directly at 623-486-8300 to schedule a free initial consultation and to see if you may be entitled to compensation for any injuries or damages resulting from a boating accident.

Anyone who suffers injury at the hands of a reckless or negligent individual has every right to fight for compensation. Medical treatment is almost always unaffordable and an innocent, injured victim should not have to pay for such expenses out-of-pocket. At Gerber Injury Law, we are ready to fight for justice and help you win the highest possible settlement for your case.

Consult With Our Injury Lawyer in Phoenix, Surprise, Peoria, or Avondale Today.