Lynnwood Boat Accident Lawyer

Living in the Pacific Northwest means water is usually close by. Accidents, however, can happen on the water. Unfortunately, incidents on water can be more dangerous and complicated due to the risk of drowning and difficulty in getting aid to the scene of the accident.

When you suffer an injury on the water because someone else recklessly operated their watercraft, you deserve to receive compensation for your injuries. A Lynnwood boat accident lawyer could help by investigating the accident, negotiating with insurance companies or others involved in the incident, and fighting for your rights. Reach out to one of our skilled personal injury attorneys today for assistance.

State Comparative Fault Rules

It can be difficult to determine who is at fault for an accident. In fact, it is possible that multiple people could share responsibility.

State law contemplates this possibility in Revised Code of Washington § 4.22.070. This statute provides that if a lawsuit goes to trial, the jury must determine the percentage of fault for the accident attributable to each person involved in the accident, including the injured person who brought the suit. Each person is then responsible for paying the injured person’s damages in proportion to the percentage of fault the jury assigned to them.

Revised Code of Washington § 4.22.005 clarifies that simply being assigned some portion of fault does not prevent an injured person from recovering damages. Instead, the amount the injured person can recover as compensation will be reduced in proportion to their fault. A Lynnwood attorney experienced in handling boating crashes could determine how these rules could affect recovery in a specific case.

State Boating Rules

Many different rules and regulations apply to operating boats and other watercraft. These rules are intended to keep everyone on the waterways safe. Complying with them can help eliminate accidents in the first place. When the  person injured while boating was violating any applicable rules at the time of the accident, they are more likely to be assigned fault and have their recovery reduced.

After a watercraft accident, a Lynwood lawyer could determine whether any laws were broken and if any of those caused the crash. Before an accident, however, it is the operator of the watercraft’s responsibility to know and comply with the rules. If operating a motor-powered vessel, an important rule to be aware of is Revised Code of Washington § 79A.60.640, which states any person operating a boat with a horsepower of 15 or greater must be over 12 years old and have a boater education card. The courses necessary to receive this card will help the operator become familiar with any other rules they need to know.

It is also important for everyone on the water to be aware of Revised Code of Washington § 79A.60.200. This statute provides that after an accident or collision on the water, the operators or drivers of the vessels involved are required to stop and render aid. The rule also clarifies that anyone who stops to help in compliance with this statute will not be liable for any further injuries or damage that result so long as they acted reasonably in trying to help. Moreover, the statute explicitly provides that stopping to render aid in this way cannot be used as evidence that the person caused or is responsible for the accident in any way.

Reach Out to a Lynwood Watercraft Accident Attorney Today

Collisions on the water can have severe and dangerous consequences. When you or a loved experience an injury, you deserve to have the responsible party pay to compensate you for your losses.

A Lynnwood boat accident lawyer may be able to help you recover these damages. Call one of our experienced attorneys today to schedule an initial consultation and learn more about your options.