Boating Accidents

With the abundance of lakes in Michigan and the significant rise in the number of personal watercraft, boating accidents are all too frequent. In the United States for the year 2015, there were 4,158 boating accidents resulting in 626 fatalities, 2,613 injuries and $42 million dollars in property damage. In these boating accidents:

  • 76% of all fatal boating accidents involved drowning (85% were not wearing personal flotation devices)
  • 22 children under the age of 13 lost their lives and only 2 were wearing life jackets.
  • Alcohol was involved in 17% of boating fatalities
  • 71% of all boating fatalities occurred on watercraft where the operator had not received boating safety instruction
  • The highest percentage of deaths occurred in the following vessels:
Open Motorboats 46%
Kayaks 12%
Canoes 11%

The most common types of watercraft accidents involve:

  • Collisions with other watercraft
  • Collisions with a fixed objects such as docks
  • Flooding/Swamping
  • Grounding
  • Skier Accidents

The most common factors contributing to watercraft accidents are:

  • Alcohol use
  • Operator inattention
  • Careless/reckless operation
  • Operator inexperience
  • Excessive speed
  • Hazardous waters
  • Passenger/skier behavior
  • No proper lookout
  • Machinery system failure
  • Weather

Please see the U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Department of Transportation Boating Website for more information.

Watercraft accidents can be complex and if you are involved in a boating accident you should contact a lawyer who is familiar with Michigan laws and regulations. Contact the Davis Law Center for a free consultation.

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For a thorough case review for personal injury and accidents in the State of Michigan, click here or simply call 248-865-7740 to schedule a consultation.

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