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The natural coastal areas, lakes, and rivers that exist throughout the state of New Jersey make boating and other watercraft-related activities common pastimes for residents and visitors alike. As a result, boating accidents occur regularly, which can lead to catastrophic injuries for their operators and occupants. If you or a loved one sustained injuries in a boating collision, you should consult an Atlantic County boat accident lawyer for advice and guidance.
Many boat accidents stem from the negligent behaviors of boat operators. When negligent actions cause harm to others, injured parties may have a valid claim against the responsible parties. An experienced Atlantic County personal injury attorney can be a vital part of successfully prosecuting any such claims that stem from boating accidents.
Common Causes Of Boat Accidents in Atlantic County
Operator error is by far the most common cause of boat accidents that result in injuries to others. These negligent behaviors can result in boats colliding with other boats, fixed objects, and skiers or personal watercraft operators, flooding or swamping, and grounding. Typical types of boat operator negligence may include the following:
- Operating while intoxicated by alcohol or drugs
- Not paying attention to surroundings or waterway traffic
- Excessive speed and other errors in navigational rules
- Inexperience in operating boats
Boating accidents can result in significant injuries to boat operators and occupants. Due to the high risk of drowning in boating accidents, fatalities often are consequences. Consulting an Atlantic County wrongful death lawyer could be crucial to seeking compensation on behalf of individuals and their families who have been killed during boat accidents.
Proving Fault in Atlantic City Boat Accident Claims
The foundation of most boat accident claims is negligence, which requires evidence providing the various elements of this legal theory. Proof of negligence requires proof of four distinct elements:
- The actor owed a duty of care to other occupants and users of the waterway
- The actor breached that duty of care owed to others
- The breach directly causes harm to others
- The affected parties have experienced injuries as a result
Relevant evidence in boat accident cases may include various types of documentary and physical evidence. Additionally, witness testimony and statements, medical records, photographic evidence, and toxicology reports all may be appropriate in these proceedings. Complex accidents also may involve expert witnesses, such as those who reconstruct accidents.
Claims arising from accidents that occur on the water can be more challenging to litigate than motor vehicle accident claims. With a continually changing environment, as well as weather and water conditions, determining fault in a boat accident may be a complicated task. An attorney in Atlantic County can help injured parties compile the necessary evidence to support a boat accident claim.
Comparative Negligence and Atlantic City Boat Accident Claims
Boat accidents can involve multiple watercraft and negligent parties. In some cases, the injury victims bear some fault for the accident that led to their injuries. Nonetheless, these individuals still may be entitled to compensation for their losses, based on the situation.
State law requires that the injured parties be 50 percent or less at fault for the accident to recover damages for their injuries from other partially negligent parties. Although they can seek only a reduced amount of compensation under these circumstances, they might still be entitled to some compensation to defray their expenses. If they are more than 50 percent responsible for their actions, however, they may not seek payment from other negligent parties.
Contact an Atlantic County Boat Accident Attorney Today
When carelessness leads to tragedy, medical bills, lost wages, and other expenses can quickly accumulate. As you are trying to recover from your injuries, neither you nor your family may be able to devote your full attention to these critical legal and financial concerns. In this situation, an Atlantic County accident lawyer may be able to assist you.
Working with legal counsel may allow you to focus on your recovery and your family. Your attorney may be able to get you the compensation that you need and deserve when the actions of negligent parties cause you harm. Do not hesitate to get the advice that you need by calling our firm today.