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Boating accidents are all too common in Connecticut

On Behalf of | Jul 9, 2024 | Personal Injury

Boating is synonymous with summertime recreation for many people in Connecticut. They head out on a small boat to catch fish early in the morning or take their families to the lake for tubing or water skiing on hot days. Whether someone owns a boat or rents one, they expect an aquatic excursion to be fun and relaxing.

Most people who enjoy boating do so safely. However, boating incidents that lead to injury and even death occur more often than people may realize. For some families, the summer holidays are a painful reminder of a prior boating tragedy that forever changed their lives.

There has been a noticeable increase in the number of fatal boating incidents reported in Connecticut in recent years. Many of those tragedies occur on federal holidays or the weekends closest to them. A large number of boating incidents involve at least one operator under the influence of alcohol. Those headed out for a cruise this summer need to understand the risks involved.

What does the data show?

Recent summers have seen multiple tragedies on bodies of water across Connecticut. All it takes is a few moments is negligence or a failure to consistently wear safety gear for a day out boating to turn into a tragedy. The number of such occurrences has increased noticeably in recent summers.

There were 16 boating deaths in 2021 and 2022, which is a concerning increase when looking at prior years. Between 2018 and 2022, there were 26 reported boating deaths in Connecticut. Collisions involving recreational vessels were the top cause of such fatalities.

Many of those collisions involve someone who has enjoyed a few beers while out on the water. People who drink while boating may have a hard time avoiding other vessels, including jet skis. They could also strike swimmers.

The process of holding someone accountable for a boating incident can be relatively complex. Not all boat owners carry specialized insurance. Civil litigation is sometimes necessary.

Those affected by negligent watercraft operation can theoretically take legal action against someone who broke the law by boating while drunk or who did something clearly negligent on the water. Discussing the scenario that led to a boating incident with a skilled legal team could help people identify their options when pursuing compensation.