Southaven Lawyers Helping Boating Accident Victims After an Injury

Skilled local counsel serving clients from offices in Southaven, Hernando and Olive Branch

Many people participate in recreational boating as a fun way to enjoy the great outdoors with friends and family during the summer and fall months. Mississippi has 119 public lakes, 123,000 stream miles and 225,000 freshwater acres, making it a great place for fishing – and of course, traveling down the mighty Mississippi river itself is an event that cannot be missed by locals and visitors alike. But even when boaters follow all of the safety rules and take every precaution on their vessels, they could still fall victim to a boating accident caused by another person’s negligence.

When you are hurt out on a river or a lake, you want a skilled personal injury lawyer by your side. The team at Taylor, Jones & Taylor has the skills, the resources and the knowledge required to successfully represent victims of Mississippi boating accidents. The firm maintains multiple offices in Southaven, Hernando and Olive Branch for the convenience of their clients.

Boating accidents and the laws

According to the U.S. Coast Guard, there were 41 recreational boating accidents and 13 deaths in Mississippi in 2013. The most common causes of recreational boating accidents include:

  • Careless or reckless operation
  • Boating under the influence
  • Operator inattention/ no designated lookout
  • Operator inexperience
  • Passenger recklessness

Given the fact that alcohol is the leading contributing factor in fatal boating accidents, the Mississippi Boating Safety Act prohibits the operation of a watercraft on public waters while under the influence of alcohol or any other substance which could impair the person’s ability to operate the watercraft safely.

Penalties for violating this law include fines starting at $25 for a first offense, which is a misdemeanor, to $5000 for a 4th or subsequent offense, which is a felony. Other penalties include mandatory boating safety classes, jail time from 24 hours to up to five years and the suspension of the boating license.

Types of boating accidents

Aside from a boat sinking, other types of boating accidents can include colliding with another vessel, fire on board, capsizing and passengers falling overboard. Other boating mishaps are associated with water sports such as water skiing, jet skiing, tubing and fishing.

In Mississippi, boat operators are required to have completed a boating safety course before operating a boat. Anyone under the age of 12 who is operating a boat must be accompanied by a person 21 years or older. The Coast Guard reports that 88 percent of the people who died in boating accidents were not wearing life jackets. There is a federal law requiring all boats to have at least one wearable life jacket or personal floatation device for every passenger on board the boat.

Injured on the water? Learn more about your options

You are not alone when you have been severely injured in a boating accident; Taylor, Jones & Taylor is by your side. If you have questions about personal injury lawsuits you may call 662-253.5193, or fill out this contact form to make an appointment at one of the firm’s Southaven, Hernando or Olive Branch. The firm is proud to serve clients throughout Mississippi in towns such as Batesville, Clarksdale, Sardis, Enid, Arkabutla, Grenada, Oxford, Tupelo and Cleveland. How can we make your life better today?