Residents and visitors to Pennsylvania love our lakes. We have some of the most beautiful lakes and waterways in the country. Therefore, our lakes are filled with boats as individuals enjoy fishing, swimming, water-skiing, tubing, and gorgeous sunsets. However, there is also a risk of a boating accident when you are on the water.
Sadly, thousands of people are injured each year in boating accidents. In Pennsylvania, there were 57 reported accidents involving boats in 2019. However, many of the boating accident injuries go unreported each year unless they result in death or severe injuries.
A boating accident can cause severe injuries, permanent disabilities, and death. Knowing how to avoid a boating accident can help reduce your risk of sustaining one of the five most common boating injuries.
Five Common Boating Accident Injuries
There are many different types of boating accident injuries. However, five of the most common boating accident injuries are:
Even a strong swimmer can drown while boating.
Drowning is a common boating accident injury when boats collide with each other, or a boat capsizes. If a person falls overboard, the person may hit their head, which can lead to drowning. Wearing a life jacket can help reduce the risk of drowning in a boating accident.
A person that swims too close to the boat motor propellers can sustain a deep laceration. In some cases, the person could lose a limb if the propeller blades are moving fast. People should avoid swimming at the rear of the boat.
Most boats have electric systems that require a strong electrical current. Also, some boats have appliances and other items that operate on electricity. A person could be electrocuted if the boats and its systems are not appropriately maintained.
4. Broken Bones
Broken bones are also common boat accident injuries. Wet surfaces on the boat can make it easy to slip and fall. Also, people may fall when they are standing or walking and the boat speeds up, a wave rocks the boat, or the driver makes an unexpected turn.
5. Traumatic Brain Injuries
Traumatic brain injuries and other head injuries are common injuries related to boating. A person may hit their head on the side of the boat while jumping into the water. Falls on the boat can also cause head injuries.
Water-skiing accidents and tubing accidents may also result in head injuries. Water-skiing can also result in broken bones depending on how the person hits the water and the speed at the time of a water-skiing accident.
The Pennsylvania Fish & Boat Commission has information available online about boating safety.
Why Do Boating Accidents Happen?
There are many reasons why a boating accident happens. Some of the more common causes of boating accidents in Erie include:
- Operator inattention
- Reckless actions by the driver, passengers, or other drivers
- Excess speed
- Failing to maintain a proper lookout
- Extreme weather conditions
- Intoxicated boating
- Failing to maintain the boat
- Equipment malfunction, including defective boats and boat parts
- Collisions with other vessels or objects
- Operator inexperience
If you are injured in an accident involving a boat, you might be entitled to compensation for your damages. You can hold the person responsible for causing your injury liable by filing a personal injury claim. However, you must prove that the party’s negligence or intentional acts were the direct and proximate cause of your injuries.
An Erie boating accident lawyer can investigate the cause of the accident to determine who is liable for your injuries and help you seek fair compensation for your damages.
Contact an Erie Boating Accident Attorney for Help
Call The Travis Law Firm at (800) 401-2066 to schedule your free legal consultation with a boating accident lawyer. We want to help you receive the compensation you deserve after being injured on a boat.