Alabama Boat Accident Attorneys
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The waters of Alabama’s Gulf Coast are utilized by thousands of people who operate their boats commercially or recreationally. Alabama’s various lakes and rivers are also popular for tourists and residents alike. The United States Coast Guard reported that 70 accidents occurred on Alabama waters causing 21 deaths. These tragic incidents ruin lives and devastate families—both emotionally and financially.
When a boating accident occurs, it is nearly always a result of negligence and was preventable with proper safety practices. The Alabama boat accident attorneys at Arnold & Itkin LLP are ready to help those who have been involved in a boating accident or jet ski crash. We have won verdicts and settlements worth billions, helping our clients rebuild their lives, afford medical care, and other benefits.
Find out if you have a case today. Speak with an Alabama boat crash lawyer at our firm for free, and your attorney will review all of your options with you. Call (888) 493-1629!
Boating Accidents in Alabama
Alabamians are no strangers to boating accidents. Recent incidents are creating the highest rate of boating deaths in the last 20 years of Alabama’s history. By July of 2018, 14 people had died in boating accidents: nearly the number of deaths that occurred in all of 2017.
Recent Alabama boating accidents include:
On July 22, a man crashed into a bridge’s support pylon.
The accident killed 2 people and paralyzed a third. The boat’s operator was drunk.
On July 4, a man drove his ski boat into a bass boat.
The collision killed 2 and injured 5. The man was driving drunk and has been criminally charged.
On April 1,
two bass boats collided in the Mobile Tensaw Delta.
The accident involved no alcohol and was likely a misunderstanding of the right-of-way rules.
Boating While Intoxicated
As proven in the examples above, the combination of alcohol and boating is lethal and unfortunately common. In fact, alcohol is considered the leading cause of boating fatalities nationally. Of all 658 fatalities in 2017, about 125 were directly attributed to alcohol, or nearly 1 in 5.
It isn’t hard to obtain a boat license in Alabama. For a long time, people were not even required to obtain a license. Today, the state requires boat operators to take a written test before being able to operate a boat. Notably, you can be as young as 12 years old and operate a boat. Unlike drivers’ license tests, the test to be licensed does not require applicants to operate a boat to verify their abilities. Children, unlicensed adults, and inexperienced operators are all sharing the waterways of Alabama.
Just as with a car on the road, the weather can change safety conditions on the water. Storms may cause rough waters that force vessels to take on water. This means that boats are liable to capsize or even sink in rough waters. In fact, in the recent duck boat accident that killed 17 people, including 2 from Alabama, rough waters caused the tourist boat to sink.
While many own their own boat and take pride in their skill, inexperienced boaters often rent vessels. Little commitment or experience lead to thrill-seeking as renters aggressively push boats past their legal and mechanical limits. As a result, these boaters put everyone else at risk.
False Sense of Security
While out on Alabama waters, it’s easy to feel safe in your boat due to the water’s wide open spaces. This false sense of security leads drivers to misunderstand their boat’s distance from other vessels. As boats are hard to stop, operators can fail to give an adequate amount of stopping distance as they approach other objects. While a lake may feel large and serene, it’s important to remember this does not mean all is safe.
Alabama Boat Accident FAQ
What do you do to prove fault in a boat accident?
Proving fault in a boat accident will require an investigation into what caused the collision. Most of the time, this is a boat operator who is inexperienced, negligent, or under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs. In other cases, boat and other watercraft accidents are caused by defective products, such as faulty boat engines or other parts and systems. Extreme weather can also cause serious accidents. By reviewing the physical evidence, talking to witnesses, and working with accident reconstruction specialists to put it all together, our Alabama boat accident lawyers can determine what caused your collision and therefore who should be held responsible for your medical care and other losses you’ve experienced. A successful case will give you the invaluable opportunity to rebuild.
What compensation am I entitled to after a boating accident in Alabama?
A person who has been injured in a boating accident in Alabama may be entitled to economic and non-economic damages. This financial compensation is meant to help a victim of negligence or wrongdoing rebuild their lives to as similar a situation as they were in before the accident.
The following economic damages may be available in a boat accident claim:
- Medical treatment
- Ongoing medical care
- Physical therapy
- Medication and medical supplies
- Travel expenses to and from appointments
- Lost earnings
- Loss of future/potential earnings
- Property damage
The following non-economic damages may be available in a boat accident claim:
- Mental anguish
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Loss of companionship/consortium
Every case is different, so it is important to discuss yours with a qualified attorney. During your free consultation, we can talk to you about what your case might be worth and how to secure the compensation you need.
What will it cost for an Alabama boat accident lawyer?
When you work with Arnold & Itkin, you pay no upfront costs. We have the resources to investigate your case and to help you while your case is underway. We’ll forward all costs associated with handling your case while you focus on healing and spending time with the people you love. Then, you only pay legal fees if and when we win your case. We only get paid if we negotiate a settlement or win a verdict on your behalf. We also offer a free consultation to get you started, so there’s no risk and no obligation.
Alabama Boat Attorneys with a History of Victories
When a tragic event occurs on the water due to the careless action of others, it is time to find help. Arnold & Itkin’s experienced team of Alabama boat accident attorneys have helped hundreds of people who have suffered a catastrophic injury or wrongful death. We have a history of victories that prove our dedication to helping victims get their lives back on track. When tragedy strikes, we are here to help you pick up the pieces.
If you have been injured in an accident, call our attorneys at (888) 493-1629. We will help you discuss your best options.