Missouri Boating Accidents
Info from our Springfield Injury Lawyer
Tourists and locals alike enjoy Missouri’s rivers and lakes throughout the year. Individuals must be extremely careful when navigating through our waters, as intoxicated boaters have the potential to cause accidents to other boaters, swimmers and fisherman. What is particularly dangerous is that boating accidents occur in areas where emergency services may not be readily available, and injuries can worsen while trying to obtain medical services. Springfield injury attorney David W. Ransin is a native Missourian who has represented both out-of-state tourists and local residents alike who suffered serious personal injuries in boating accidents.
What Boaters Must Do to Avoid Accidents
- Always comply with laws and regulations when embarking on a lake or river. Missouri State Highway Patrol regulates permits, licenses and title registration for boaters and fishermen, so be sure to contact them before heading out.
- Always use alcohol responsibly when boating. Missouri holds boat drivers criminally accountable for boating while intoxicated (BWI) and the blood alcohol limit is .08, the same as for automobiles.
- Boats and swimmers must steer clear of other boats and jet skis, particularly if the other boaters are intoxicated. Report irresponsible boaters to the authorities.
- In general, life vests must be available for each person on a boat. Children under age 7 must wear life vests at all times while in boats and canoes. Check the specific rules as applicable to your vessel to be sure you are in compliance with all life vest and floatation device rules.
- Make a boating plan beforehand and familiarize yourself with maps of the area, including locating stops for supplies and emergencies.
- Have a first aid kit, cell phone with service, and an emergency kit on the boat with flares, clean water and flashlights.
What to Do if You Have Been in a Boating Accident
- Attend to any injuries as best you can with the first aid kit onboard. Contact the authorities.
- If you cannot get cell phone service, designate an adult to walk or boat to an area with reception. Have another person stay with anyone who is injured if he or she cannot be moved. Use flares, if necessary, to alert others to your presence.
- If possible, write down the names of other boaters involved in an accident, and the serial number or license that is required by law to be posted on the boat. If you cannot find a license number, write down a description of the boat and take a picture on your cell phone. Sometimes, boats are rented from local outfitters and will have the company’s name and a boat number clearly posted on the side.
- Take pictures of the accident, damage to any boat and personal injuries.
- After everyone injured received necessary medical attention, make a police report and contact a local personal injury lawyer in Missouri.
Contact Boat Accident Attorney in Springfield Missouri
If you have been injured due to a boater’s negligent actions on the water, do not hesitate to contact Ransin Injury Law. Our firm is dedicated to finding justice for victims and we offer telephone consultations to potential out-of-state clients who were injured on Missouri waters or by a Missouri resident. If you live here, contact us today to schedule an in-person consultation to review the merits of your case and review the options available to you.