Common Causes of Boating Accidents

sail boating in new york, near the statue of liberty

Many people throughout New York enjoy spending time on boats. While boating can be a fun activity, it can also be dangerous. Boating accidents can lead to severe injuries or even fatalities. If you have been seriously injured or lost a loved one in a boat accident that was caused by someone else’s negligence in New York, you should retain a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. An experienced attorney can determine your options for recovering financial compensation.

The unfortunate reality is that the majority of boating accidents are preventable. Most boating accidents are the result of negligence. At Finz & Finz, P.C., our New York City boat accident lawyers have extensive experience helping those who suffered as a result of boat accidents. If you have been seriously injured in a boating accident, call Finz & Finz, P.C. today for a free and confidential consultation. We will help you understand your options and determine the best path to recovery.

Common Causes of Boat Accidents

Distracted Boat Operator

Boat operator distraction is a common cause of accidents. If a boat operator is distracted, they may make dangerous turns, not see hazards in the water, or drive at high speeds.

Operator inexperience

Boat operators who do not obtain the necessary safety training are much more likely to violate safety regulations or engage in risky behaviors that can cause accidents.

Excessive Speed

Operating a boat at a safe speed ensures there is time to react to hazards. Waterways have speed limits. It’s illegal to operate a boat at a speed that causes danger to others. Speeding often does not allow the operator to stop safely or maneuver in time. Operating a boat too fast can result in crashes with other boats or hazards in the water.

Operating While Intoxicated

One of the most common causes of boating accidents is operating a boat while drunk. When the boat operator has too much alcohol to drink, the results can be severe. An intoxicated operator is unable to recognize and respond to hazards in the water because their reflexes are slower, and their judgment is impaired. New York law strictly prohibits boating while under the influence of alcohol.

Improper lookout

If the watch on a boat is not paying attention, it could lead to a boating accident.


Reckless actions by anyone on board can result in devastating consequences. Examples include overloading the boat, which could lead to capsizing. Because people falling overboard is one of the top causes of deadly boating accidents, good judgment and proper safety must be exercised at all times. Examples of reckless operation include; weaving a boat through a busy area and jumping the wake of another vessel.

Defective equipment

If there is defective equipment, it could cause a boat operator to lose control of the boat, or it could cause a boat to sink. Equipment manufacturers might be liable for injuries that happen as a result of defective equipment.

Negligent maintenance

Boats have to be properly maintained to avoid injury to passengers. Failure to keep a boat in proper working order can spell tragedy. In these cases, a third party might be to blame for the accident.

Boating During Poor Weather

Boating in inclement weather can lead to accidents. Operating a boat during a storm can be extremely dangerous. If there is any question about the weather, it’s best to wait and take the boat out when the weather is better.

Types of Boat Accident Injuries

A committed personal injury lawyer who understands the devastating effects of a boat accident injury can help pursue financial compensation. Before you think about filing a personal injury claim alone, consult with a knowledgeable boat accident lawyer who is experienced in these types of cases.

Boat accidents often lead to injuries such as:

Unfortunately, death is a common result of boat accidents. In these cases, an attorney can help pursue a wrongful death claim on behalf of the family who has lost a loved one. While financial compensation from wrongful death claims cannot bring back a loved one, it can hold at-fault parties accountable for their reckless actions and provide you with the compensation you need to move forward in life.

Who Is Responsible For a Boating Accident?

Determining who is responsible for a boat accident is typically requires a thorough investigation into the facts and circumstances. While no two boat accident cases are exactly alike, there are common scenarios that can provide insight into the parties that are often held liable.

All of the following may be held liable for injuries resulting from a boating accident:

  • Boat operator
  • Boat passengers
  • Boat repair shop
  • Boat manufacturer
  • Parts manufacturer
  • Boat rental company

An experienced boat accident lawyer will investigate the cause of the accident and make sure all potential defendants are held accountable. If you have been seriously injured in a boat accident, you should not have to shoulder the financial burden alone. The highly skilled attorneys at Finz & Finz, P.C. on Long Island will fight tirelessly in pursuit of the maximum compensation you need for your boat accident injuries.

Contact a Boat Accident Lawyer Today

Have you or a loved one suffered severe injuries as a result of a boating incident in New York or Long Island? The New York City injury attorneys of Finz & Finz, P.C. are here to help you hold those responsible for your injuries accountable. If you have been injured by the negligent actions or inaction of another party, you have a right to seek full and fair compensation. Contact Finz & Finz, P.C., at (855) TOP-FIRM or fill out the free case evaluation.

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Finz & Finz, P.C. is a New York and Long Island personal injury law firm based out of Mineola, NY. It was founded in 1984 and is highly rated, with many honors and awards of excellence.