If you or a loved one got hurt in a boating accident, a Mesa, Arizona boating accident lawyer can help you go after damages for your losses. Call Zanes Law today at (866) 499-8989 for a free consultation. We will come to you in your hospital room or your home. We make things convenient for our clients. We will handle both the initial consultation and sign-up in one telephone call.
We understand that getting hurt in a boating accident can turn your life upside-down. Our clients can focus on getting better while we take care of everything else. At Zanes Law, we do everything from A to Z.
How to Protect Your Rights After a Mesa Boating Accident
You need to take care of your health and your legal rights after getting hurt in a boating accident in Mesa.
- Get immediate medical attention to safeguard your health. Your injuries have the best chance of healing well with prompt medical attention. Also, you might have injuries that have not yet shown symptoms, like internal bleeding.
- Work with a Mesa boating accident lawyer right away if someone else’s carelessness caused your injuries. We will work directly with the at-fault person’s liability insurance carrier to negotiate a settlement of your losses. If the case does not settle, we will file a lawsuit seeking money damages on your behalf.
- We will use your medical records, among other things, to link your injuries to the boating accident, so do not delay in going to the emergency room or your doctor, whichever is appropriate. If you try to “tough it out” for a few days, the defendant will likely allege that you got hurt from some other event and not the boating accident.
- All vessel operators involved in the accident must send a report of the accident to the Arizona Game and Fish Department within 48 hours of an individual getting injured or killed.
Every situation is different. You might need to take different or additional steps, depending on your circumstances. There may also be a statute of limitations under AZ § 12-542 that presents a timeline we must follow when pursuing justice for your injuries.
Navigation Rules in Arizona
Many accidents happen because people violate the navigation rules of our state. Some of the factors that can determine who must give way include:
- The type of watercraft—a powerboat or a sailboat.
- Meeting head-on
- When the paths of the two boats are crossing
- When one boat overtakes another
- Whether you are on the water during the daytime or at night
If a person is operating a watercraft without sufficient instruction or is under the influence of alcohol, he might not follow the Arizona navigation rules. When this conduct causes or contributes to an accident or injury, the injured person can seek money damages.
The Most Frequent Boating Violations in Arizona
The Arizona Game and Fish Department says that the most common violations of boating laws in our state include:
- Operating the boat while impaired by alcohol or other substances. A person can get charged with Operating Under the Influence (OUI), which carries the same penalties as Driving under the Influence (DUI) in a motor vehicle. If someone caused the boating accident because of alcohol or other substance impairment, he can face criminal charges and civil liability to the people he injures.
- No fire extinguisher. Arizona law requires fire extinguishers on watercraft. The devices must be in working condition and in an accessible area but not near the engine or in a compartment.
- Excess speed in a no-wake zone. Also, it is illegal to operate a water vessel at speeds that are faster than reasonable under the circumstances.
- Not enough life preservers (personal flotation devices – PFDs). All vessels must have enough U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jackets for each person on board to have one.
- No throwable flotation device. All vessels that are at least 16 feet long must have at least one U.S. Coast Guard-approved throwable flotation device onboard and within easy reach.
- Children in the boat not wearing PFDs. All children under the age of 13 must wear a fastened PFD at all times when on any vessel on the water.
- Violation of a navigation rule, like following the general requirement of counterclockwise traffic flow and giving way to other boats when required by a navigation rule.
These actions can cause or contribute to injuries and fatalities. Let your Mesa boating accident lawyer know if someone violated one of these or other boating regulations related to the accident in which you got hurt.
Seeking Damages in a Mesa Boating Accident
The damages you can pursue will depend on the facts of your case, so we cannot say how much compensation you might collect until we talk with you and investigate your accident.
Some of the types of losses we can recover for our clients include:
- Medical expenses, for the reasonable cost of the treatment you needed for your injuries. This category can include things like the ambulance, emergency room, hospital, surgery, doctors, and physical therapy.
- Lost wages, if you missed paychecks because of your injuries. We will go after the wages, salary, self-employment, or other types of regular income of which you went without because of the boating accident.
- Pain and suffering, which can include physical discomfort and emotional distress.
- Diminished earning potential, if your injuries cause you to make less money than before the accident.
- Intangible losses like disfigurement, loss of enjoyment of life, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
- Long-term care costs, if you sustained catastrophic injuries that leave you in need of daily assistance with medical procedures and personal care.
You might not experience all of these losses. Some people suffer other losses in addition to the ones listed here.
Speak with a Mesa Boating Accident Lawyer Today
If you got injured because of someone else’s carelessness and are looking for a boating accident lawyer near you, Zanes Law will help you go after damages. We will work tirelessly to get you all the compensation that you deserve.
When you have a lawyer representing you, the insurance company cannot harass or bother you. If the adjuster contacts you, tell him to talk to your lawyer.
Call a Mesa boating accident lawyer from Zanes Law today at (866) 499-8989 for a free consultation. There is no obligation.