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Boat Crashes On Louisiana Waters

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Between the casino boats on the Red River and the pleasure craft on Cross Lake, one can see boats all over the Shreveport-Bossier City area. Louisiana ranks in the top quarter of states in terms of boating registrations, but has also seen a rise in the number of boat crashes in recent years; since 2018, U.S. Coast Guard statistics estimate that crash numbers have gone up by approximately 25 percent.

If you have been injured in a wreck with another boat out on the water, a Shreveport injury lawyer may be able to assist you in seeking compensation.

Boat crashes can happen for a variety of different reasons, so many of which are dependent on outside factors like bad weather or the actions of other vessels. Others, however, are entirely preventable. Whether the fault of the injured boater or someone else, some crashes can be ascribed entirely to choices like driving under the influence of alcohol or other substances. Other common causes for maritime collisions include mechanical failure (or poor maintenance which failed to uncover the mechanical fault) or reckless driving. That said, regardless of the cause of the crash, the injuries can be quite severe.

Usually Tried Under A Negligence Theory

Louisiana law surrounding boat collisions holds that if someone can be shown to be responsible for the injuries you have suffered, they can be held liable for monetary compensation, covering medical bills, lost wages, and a host of other harms you may have experienced after a boat crash. This type of case is usually tried under a theory of negligence.

It is important to understand that if a person is found at fault their insurance is responsible for due compensation. If someone causes an incident and does not have insurance, the injured person cannot make recovery.

In a negligence case, an injured plaintiff must show that the defendant owed them a duty to exercise reasonable care, and that they breached that duty with their actions (or lack thereof). They must also be able to establish that the defendant’s actions directly caused their injuries, with no other intervening cause. Depending on the situation, however, establishing this chain of events can become complex.

Worth It To File Suit

If someone has been injured in a boating wreck, they often may choose not to file suit even if they were injured, because they fear they might wind up being held partially negligent in terms of causing their own injuries. However, in negligence cases, Louisiana law follows a concept known as comparative fault. This means that even if an injured plaintiff is held partially responsible for their own injuries, they can still recover – but any recovery will be lowered by their percentage of fault.

Louisiana follows a doctrine called pure comparative negligence, which means that if you are found partially liable in a civil case, you may still be able to recover damages, minus your percentage of fault.

Even knowing this, you may still believe your best choice is to not seek legal redress; after a boat crash, it is understandable that physical and emotional recovery would be first on your list of priorities. However, it is often worth it to file suit, or at least to consult an attorney. An experienced Shreveport boat crash attorney from Rice & Kendig can help clarify your options in terms of legal action. We work hard for our clients, using our skills, knowledge, and resources to secure the result you deserve. Call us today at 318-222-2772 for a free consultation.

Resource:

uscgboating.org/library/accident-statistics/Recreational-Boating-Statistics-2020-Revised.pdf

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