Enjoying a beautiful day out on Lake Pontchartrain with a sailboat from a local rental company may sound like a summer dream. What could go wrong when you have the wind in your sails, a breeze on your face, and you’re surrounded by friends and family as you enjoy watching the passing sailboats? Unfortunately, boat accidents are a common occurrence in New Orleans.

If you have been injured in a boating accident, a personal injury attorney with Desiah Law Firm, LLC is ready to help you get compensation for your injuries.

New Orleans boat accident laws 

According to Louisiana Boating Law Statute §851.10, the operator of a personal watercraft involved in a crash should tend to the other party affected by the collision if there is no serious damage to their own vessel. They need to give their personal contact information to the owner of the property that was damaged in the crash. The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries has witnessed an increase in the number of boating-related fatalities and boating crash incidents in recent years. 

Boating accident statistics show that vessel crash incidents increased by 33 from 2018 to 2020. Boat operators should help themselves and other boaters by following the rules of the water. Boaters are encouraged to take the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries approved safety boating course, which is mandatory for anyone born after January 1, 1984, who will be operating a vessel over 10 horsepower. 

Boat accidents in New Orleans occur for many reasons causing severe personal injury

As a boat accident attorney in New Orleans, we frequently see boating accidents occur along the Gulf Coast. Boating accidents are not as common as car accidents but can be more deadly or severe, causing spinal cord injuries or broken bones. The leading contributing factor to boat accidents is collisions, usually with jet skis or other vessels involved. In a recent study, the United States Coast Guard completed a list of recreational boating accidents, which include:

  • Flooding and swamping
  • Collisions with fixed objects, such as recreational boats
  • Skier mishaps
  • Grounding
  • Vessels passing head on and colliding

Most boating accidents result from the error of the operator especially in recreational boats, such as speedboats, sailboats, and fishing boats. The most common causes of recreational boating accidents include:

  • Alcohol use on a fishing boat
  • Operator inattention
  • Improper lookout 
  • Carbon monoxide poisoning
  • Operator inexperience
  • Speeding
  • Boat fails
  • Distracted boating 
  • Watercraft accidents
  • Excessive speed
  • Being thrown overboard

Knowing who is responsible for a personal injury claim while trying to understand the cause of the accident can get complicated. The first thing you should do after a boat accident is to discuss your potential case with our boating accident attorneys. If you plan to go out on the water you should know how to operate a vessel safely. Life jackets can prevent you from being the next boating accident victim with serious injuries requiring medical treatment.

What should be done after a boat accident?

As soon as you get into a boat accident, you should contact the United States Coast Guard immediately. You must tell them about the accident, the location of where it happened, and any medical assistance that is needed. After the boating accident, if the incident results in injury or death to a person, property damage of $500 or more, complete loss of a vessel, or the disappearance of a person, you must notify LDWF’s Law Enforcement Division, the nearest state police, or law enforcement agency immediately. 

For any boat collision, you have to submit an Incident Report Form to LDWF within five days. Once off the scene, you will need to contact a New Orleans boat accident lawyer so they can build a solid case and help you recover compensation. 

Photo of Boat Accident

A boat accident lawyer can help you seek compensation and provide legal consultation and advice

Boat crash lawyers in New Orleans can help you seek medical care for physical injuries, receive fair compensation, and provide legal consultation. 

Collecting evidence in boat accident cases can protect your rights

Boat accident attorneys in New Orleans can help you receive financial recovery for boating accident injuries by gathering evidence from the accident scene.

Desiah Law Firm, LLC can negotiate with the insurance companies for fair compensation

Our New Orleans boat accident lawyer will strategically handle your boating accident case to negotiate a fair settlement for your boating injuries.

Our boat accident attorney can help you file a boat accident lawsuit with tenacious litigation and courtroom representation

Boat accident victims can file a lawsuit against the liable party after contacting your attorney, who will work day in and day out, making sure your personal injury case is compensated fully.

Desiah Law Firm, LLC works tirelessly to prove someone acted negligently in your boat accident case

New Orleans boat accidents occur for many different reasons. If fatal boating accidents occur due to someone else’s negligence, we will work hard to ensure you get justice for your case. 

Our boat accident attorney will help calculate complete damages in your boat accident claim

A New Orleans boat accident attorney is here to help calculate the damages in your boat accident claim. Damages can include medical expenses, including hospital stays, doctor bills and any other injury-related medical bills, lost wages, property damage, and more.

How can boat accidents be prevented in New Orleans?

Tragic accidents can be prevented in New Orleans by knowing the rules of the water. You should read boating safety instructions before heading out on the water. Make sure a life jacket is worn to avoid being a drowning victim in case of an accident. 

Frequently Asked Questions

What are boat operators required to do when involved in an accident in Louisiana?

If you are involved in a boat crash, you are required to render aid to anyone affected by the crash if you are able to do so safely.

How do you respond to a boating accident?

You should prepare your boat before heading out on the water. You must know how to respond in the case of an emergency. If you are involved in a boating accident or boating collision, you should:

  • Make sure everyone is safe and assist as needed.
  • Contact the United States Coast Guard.
  • Secure the scene if possible. If any wreckage or other debris blocks a waterway, try to move it if possible
  • Document the event with photos or videos.

If you are in a boat accident and have sustained physical injuries, contact a New Orleans boating accident lawyer to build your case and file a claim. 

What is the cause of most fatal boating accidents?

The U.S. Coast Guard report on recreational boating accidents found that the cause of most fatal boating accidents was operator inattention. When a boat owner fails to pay attention, this can lead to passengers falling overboard, collisions, or slipping and falling aboard. Our New Orleans boating accident attorney can assist you in seeking compensation for your injuries.

Call Desiah Law Firm, LLC today for fierce New Orleans legal representation

If you have suffered serious injury in a New Orleans boating accident, you may be facing high medical bills. We want to hold the responsible party liable for your injuries. Reach our personal injury attorney with Desiah Law Firm, LLC, using our fast online contact for a free case evaluation.