Mansfield Boat Accident Lawyer
Texas provides many boating opportunities. Not only does the southern state feature numerous lakes, it is partially situated along the Gulf Coast. While many locals and visitors enjoy beautiful days on the water, boating activities can sometimes result in catastrophic accidents and serious injuries. If you recently sustained an injury during an outing on a sailboat, motor boat, cabin cruiser, party boat, or other vessel, you might be entitled to damages. A Mansfield boat accident lawyer could review your case to determine what actions to take.
The days after any accident can be stressful not only because you are recovering from your physical injuries and dealing with the corresponding medical bills, but also healing from an emotional and mental standpoint. An experienced personal injury attorney could provide the legal assistance that makes the days following the incident less burdensome.
In addition to determining if there is a case, a legal professional can help you recover damages such as future lost wages, current and ongoing medical costs, mental anguish, loss of opportunity, disfigurement, and pain and suffering.
When Should a Plaintiff Report a Boating Accident in Mansfield?
A boating accident must be reported to the local police department or the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department within 30 days of the incident if:
- It caused injuries beyond first aid care
- It caused property damages exceeding $2,000
- It resulted in one or more fatalities within 48 hours of the accident
After reporting the boating accident to the correct authorities, the plaintiff should focus their attention on scheduling a consultation with an attorney in Mansfield to learn more about their eligibility to recover compensation.
What Makes a Vessel Owner Liable for an Accident?
A boat owner in Mansfield or another region of Texas becomes liable for an accident if the individual does not adhere to the state’s boating laws. The owner must complete a boater education course if they were born after September 1, 1993, and owns a vessel or personal watercraft (PWC) with a horsepower rating of 15 or above. Age plays a role as well, for example an individual under the age of 13 can operate a watercraft if they are with at least one other person over the age of 18 with boater experience and licensing. Those aged 18 and older can operate a watercraft without supervision if they completed a boater education course approved by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.
Boating laws in Texas also cover vessel operation under the influence of alcohol. It is illegal to operate a watercraft when an individual has a blood alcohol level of 0.08 or higher and can result in up to 10 years in prison and fines up to $10,000 depending on the person’s previous record. However, open containers in the passenger area of a boat is permitted under Texas law.
Mansfield legal professionals help determine boat accident liability in light of different case factors. Boat operators who are unlicensed, under the influence, underage, or violating other Texas Water Safety Act laws such as using excessive speed, operating the vessel in a reckless manner that accidentally or purposely puts other boaters in danger, or intentionally creating a dangerous wash or wake will likely be held liable in court.
Talk to a Mansfield Boat Accident Attorney Today
If a day out boating took a serious turn and resulted in severe if not fatal injuries, discuss your case with a Mansfield boat accident lawyer as soon as possible. If the defendant is found guilty of negligence or intentional tort, you could win damages that ease worries about future medical costs or lost wages.
Report the accident and make contacting a skilled attorney your next step. To get started on your case, call today to schedule a consultation.