Queens Boat Accident Lawyer

Many residents enjoy recreational boating on waterways throughout the state. Unfortunately, accidents involving watercraft vessels are common and especially dangerous given the added risk of drowning.

Recreational boaters must adhere to safety rules and regulations and take every possible precaution to keep their passengers and other boaters safe. When negligence leads to an accident on the water, a seasoned injury attorney could hold the liable party financially accountable. A Queens boat accident lawyer is available to further explain how an injured survivor could seek compensation from negligent operators.

Common Causes of Boat Crashes

While recreational boating offers countless hours of fun with family and friends, this activity can lead to a tragic crash when an operator is reckless behind the wheel. Operator inexperience is one of the most common causes of boat crashes, but other factors include:

  • Speeding and reckless maneuvers
  • Failing to look out for other vehicles and people in the water
  • Distracted boating
  • Boating under the influence of alcohol or drugs

If an operator was doing any of these actions at the time of an accident, they could be negligent and responsible for paying damages.

In some cases, an accident may also be caused by a machinery failure or defect resulting from a manufacturer or maintenance company’s negligence. A Queens attorney could gather evidence to determine the cause of a boat accident and who is liable for the damages.

Boating Regulations in Queens

Boat operators and passengers must abide by state boating rules and regulations to keep themselves and others on the water around them safe. The U.S. Coast Guard, State Park Police, State Police, and the Department of Environmental Conservation are government entities that enforce boating regulations on state waterways. They can force a boat to cease operations and exit the waterways at their discretion.

The New York State Parks Recreation & Historic Preservation outlines a range of recreational boating regulations to help maintain safe waterways that everyone can enjoy. Failing to meet these regulations could lead to criminal charges and make an operator liable for damages in the event of an accident.

Speed Limits

The maximum speed limit is five miles per hour when boaters are within 100 feet of other water vessels, docks, or floating devices. However, some circumstances extend the distance to 200 feet, and operators should always pay attention to signage and follow posted speed limits.

When there are no nearby hazards, many waterways allow a boater to travel at 45 miles per hour during the day and 25 at night unless otherwise posted.

Boating Accident Guidelines

When boating accidents occur, all operators are legally responsible for providing medical aid to anyone involved and exchanging information. When an accident leads to bodily harm or property damage exceeding $1,000 in value, parties must report the accident to New York State Parks in writing within five days.

Education and Age Requirements

Starting January 1st, 2025, state law will require all recreational boaters to carry a boating safety certification. State law currently requires safety certifications based on age, and the full list of requirements can be found on New York State Parks website.

Boating While Intoxicated

The state of New York prohibits boaters from operating water vessels while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Any boater with a blood alcohol content BAC of 0.08 percent or more is guilty of boating while intoxicated and could face criminal charges as well as civil liability in an injury case.

A diligent attorney could investigate a boat accident to determine if a party failed to adhere to safety laws and boating rules in Queens, making them liable for providing compensation to injured survivors.

Call a Skilled Queens Boat Accident Attorney

Avid boaters love to get out on the water whenever the weather allows. However, an increased number of recreational boaters creates traffic on the waterways, making crashes a common occurrence.

Boat operators and their passengers must do their part to follow the safety laws and act responsibly to avoid causing injuries to themselves and others. When someone fails in this duty and causes harm, call a knowledgeable Queens boat accident lawyer at Goldstein & Bashner to begin preparing your claim.

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