Recreational boaters love to get out on the water when the weather gets nice in the summer, and often do so through the fall and early winter months. However, just as with a motor vehicle, negligent actions by boat drivers can quickly lead to a traumatic and life-altering event. All boat operators on the waterways have a legal responsibility to follow safety rules and legislation.

The laws will hold them financially accountable when they do not act reasonably and cause damages, though the process of collecting compensation can be stressful and complex. Contacting an experienced personal injury attorney could help you get the payment amount you deserve. Call a Cleveland boat accident lawyer today to schedule your consultation.

The Most Common Reasons for Boat Accidents in Ohio

A fun day on the water with family and friends can quickly turn tragic, leaving the boater, passengers, or others around them with severe injuries and property damage. A skillful and compassionate Cleveland boat injury attorney could help review the details to determine the cause and liability. Some of the more common causes of boat crashes include:

Excessive Speed and Reckless Operation

When a boater uses excessive speed or acts recklessly, it is easy to lose control of the water vessel. It is also challenging to come to a stop when necessary.

Inattentive Driving

Distracted driving is hazardous when behind the wheel of a boat, just as it is when driving in a car. When a boater stops paying attention to safely operating the vessel for even a moment, the inattention can cause a severe accident within seconds.

Alcohol or Drug Use

Boating while under the influence of drugs or alcohol is as hazardous and illegal as driving a vehicle. Knowing this, a court should hold them financially responsible when boat operators use substances to the point of intoxication while on the water and cause damages.

Unsafe or Reckless Operation of a Water Vessel

The reckless driving of any motor-operated machinery—equipment, vehicle, or water vessel—is hazardous for every person involved. As per Ohio Revised Code section 1547.07, state laws strictly prohibit the reckless operation of any boat or water vessel. Unlawful watercraft operations include:

  • Failing to use caution
  • Driving in a manner that may put any person or property at risk
  • Allowing others to operate their boat unsafely
  • Operating water vessels carelessly
  • Disregarding the safety of others
  • Traveling within 200 feet of a skier
  • Hitting wakes to become airborne intentionally
  • Weaving through water vessel traffic on the water

When an operator fails to follow safety rules and statutes, they put passengers, themselves, and all other people and property around them in danger. A boat crash lawyer in Cleveland has the diligence and experience to help an injured individual collect compensation from the negligent party.

Meet With a Cleveland Boat Accident Attorney

Recreational boating can be an enjoyable way to spend time in the sun and make lasting memories. Yet, the operator and passengers must remember to follow all safety rules and avoid any negligent or reckless behavior. Often when severe accidents occur, carelessness is involved.

When a person’s negligent actions lead to negative consequences, injuries, and property damage, they must be held liable to pay the expenses to cover all losses. If you were in an accident because of another party’s careless actions, contact a Cleveland boat accident lawyer to start your claim.