According to the United States Coast Guard and Department of Homeland Security, more than 4,000 recreational boating accidents have been reported in each of the past five years. Recreational boating accidents occur year round and may involve jet skis, fishing boats, cruise ships, kayaks, canoes, and many other types of boating vessels. In 2014, which is the most recent year with available information, operator inattention, operator inexperience, improper lookout, excessive speed, and alcohol were the most common causes of recreational boating accidents.
According to the most-recent Coast Guard report on Recreational Boating Statistics, Texas is one of the leading states in the country for the number of recreational boating accidents that occur annually. On average, more than 30 people die in Texas each year from recreational boating accidents, and many more are seriously injured.
People injured in recreational boating accidents should make contacting a knowledgeable maritime attorney a top priority. Recreational boating accidents that occur on navigable waters, unlike most accidents that occur on land, involve a complex patchwork of federal and state laws. For example, depending on where the accident occurred, both state and federal law may apply. Importantly, maritime personal injury claims are generally subject to a three-year statute of limitations rather than the two-year statute of limitations that normally applies to personal injuries in Texas. Additionally, courts generally apply joint and several liability when recreational boating accidents occur on navigable waters. This means that any person or company whose actions were a substantial factor in causing the accident can be held liable for all of the person’s injuries, even if other causes also exist.
If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in a recreational boating accident in the past three years, contact one of the experienced attorneys at Abraham, Watkins, Nichols, Agosto, Aziz & Stogner by calling 713-396-3964 or toll free at 800-594-4884.