Puget Sound’s allure is an easy incentive for boaters to get out on the water, which can lead to heavily trafficked waters. The nature and temperament of the water, like life, can sometimes be unpredictable and leave you in an undesirable and unexpected position.

If you were involved in a boating accident and suffered severe injuries, a personal injury attorney could assist you in filing the appropriate claim. An experienced and committed Federal Way boating accident lawyer can assist in zealous representation of so that you can fight for the best possible outcome from an otherwise challenging situation.

Common Causes of Boating Accidents in Federal Way

Boating accidents, like other common accidents such as those involving cars, can vary significantly in both cause and effect. According to the United States Coast Guard, some of the more common causes of boating accidents are as follows:

  • Operator Inattention
  • Improper Lookout
  • Operator Inexperience
  • Excessive Speed
  • Alcohol Use
  • Hazardous Waters

Injuries That Can Arise From Boating Accidents

Since boating accidents can have many different causes and vary in severity of impact, the resulting injuries can also vary significantly on a case-by-case basis. Some of the more common injuries that result from boating accidents are:

  • Drowning
  • Brain Injuries
  • Neck Injuries
  • Brain Injuries
  • Spinal Cord Injuries
  • Lacerations
  • Sprains and bruises

At their worst, boating accident injuries can be severe and can result in lifelong pain requiring expensive and invasive surgeries and rehabilitation, or they can even result in death.

Boating Laws in Washington State

According to Washington State Park Regulations, if a person is involved in an accident while operating a boat, they must stop the vessel immediately and assist anyone who is injured or in danger. However, the obligation to assist will not apply if this assistance would create a danger to them or their vessel or passengers. A written accident report will also need to be submitted in some instances, such as if someone has died or medical treatment is required beyond first aid.

Boating Under the Influence

In Washing State, there are specific penalties for boating under the influence. Boating under the influence is a gross misdemeanor and can be punishable by up to a $5,000 fine and even a year in jail.

Also, officers with probable cause can ask a boat operator to take a breathalyzer test, which will have penalties upon refusal up to a $1,000 fine. The limit for boating under the influence of alcohol is .08, while operating under marijuana is 5.0 nanograms. These regulations will apply to anything classified as a vessel under Washington State laws, which according to RCW 79A.60.010, includes any type of craft on the water (besides seaplanes) which can be used to transport with some minor exceptions such as recreational toys.

Negligent Operation of a Vessel in Washington State

Washington State has laws in place concerning the negligent operation of a vessel. According to RCW 79A.60.030, it is an offense to operate a vessel negligently. Under this law, a vessel’s negligent operation will include driving the boat at speeds that are unreasonable or in disregard of traffic in the water and the size of the body of water

How a Federal Way Boat Accident Lawyer Could Help

The aftereffects of a boat accident injury can be devastating and long-lasting. If you have suffered injuries from a boat accident, an experienced attorney could help you with your claim. Call a Federal Way boat accident lawyer today who could review your case’s facts in an initial consultation and work with you to pursue the maximum compensation that can be recovered.