Sunny skies and clear water make the perfect weather for a day of boating. Unfortunately, when more people take their vessels out on the water ––just when the weather starts to warm up –– a relaxing boat ride can become hazardous. In fact, boating accidents can be just as severe as car crashes.
If you’re involved in a boating accident, there are several things you should do to keep yourself and passengers safe and to protect your legal rights. One thing you should consider is calling a South Florida boating accident lawyer. They can investigate your accident and be the point of contact for all matters relating to the incident.
Report the Accident
You’re required to call 911 when there are more than minor injuries or damages in a boat crash. The threshold for minor injuries is when the individual would need more medical attention than a first aid kit can provide. Even if there are no injuries or damages, someone should always call emergency responders as soon as possible.
After you report the accident, exchange information with any other individuals who are involved in the collision. This includes the name, address, and boating registration number of the other boater. If you’re involved in a boating accident, and the owner of the other vessel is not present, you must make all reasonable attempts to notify them of the accident.
Attorneys build personal injury cases with the evidence they gather. Without evidence to support your story, you may not have a strong case. You should always take photos at the accident scene, including photos of how the boats were positioned in the water. Photographing injuries and the water and weather conditions can also help prove your case to insurers.
Eyewitness testimony can also be valuable. They may have seen the other driver acting negligently before your boating accident. Document witness contact information at the scene.
Seek Medical Attention
Even if you feel fine or show no injuries, it’s always a good idea to consult with a doctor following any type of accident. Internal injuries are extremely common among boating accident victims. Any cuts and bruises should also be examined carefully. It’s also important to remember that not all injuries will show symptoms right away.
Save All Bills and Receipts
You should save all accident-related bills and receipts that you pay for out of pocket. The amount of compensation you can receive depends on proving how much your medical treatment, property damage, and other factors cost.
Types of Compensation from a Boat Crash
The type of compensation you can receive depends on the type and extent of your injuries. After reviewing your case, your attorney might be able to obtain financial compensation for the following losses:
- Medical bills
- Pain and suffering
- Property damage
- Wrongful death
- Loss of income/future lost wages
In some rare cases, a court may also award you punitive damages. These damages aren’t meant to cover any damages in particular. Instead, they are awarded to deter other boaters from acting similarly to the defendant in the future.
Speak to a Boating Accident Attorney
After sustaining injuries from a boating accident in South Florida, it might be challenging to attend doctor’s appointments, communicate with insurers, and calculate bills. A claims adjuster will take advantage of your stress and try to pin the blame on you, and all your hard work can lead to an inadequate settlement or insurers denying your claim.
While you focus on your recovery, let Attorney Robert Baker of the Baker Legal Team collect medical records and negotiate with insurers. He has been helping the South Florida community for more than 30 years and will do everything possible for you to receive proper compensation.
Call (561) 320-0000 or complete a contact form to schedule a free consultation.