When the sun beats down and the weather heats up, those of us living on the sunny side of the state find a variety of ways to cool off – either near, in, or on the water aboard boats or personal watercraft. While the allure of local rivers may be tempting, a Yakima Herald-Republic article featuring local firefighter Brian Robertson warns water lovers to stay away from the Yakima River for a least a month while snowpack melts into the river to avoid swimming and boating accidents.
According to Robertson, the Yakima River is currently running fast. It’s also murky, with only one-foot visibility, and only 50 degrees – a temperature cold enough to shock swimmers and prevent them from swimming to safety if they fall in the water.
Anyone who spends time around or on the water should know that the laws of the water differ from the laws of the road. If you happen to be struck or injured by another boat while you’re on the water, ask yourself these questions:
1) Did my injury occur because the operator of another boat was careless or reckless, or were they failing to follow federal or Washington state boating laws?
2) Could my injury have occurred due to the other user’s poorly functioning or poorly maintained watercraft, or did the other boat lack proper safety equipment or supplies?
3) Most dangerously, was the boat who struck my watercraft or caused my injury operated by someone under the influence of drugs or alcohol? During 2015, alcohol was the leading known contributing factor in fatal boating accidents and was listed as the leading factor in 17 percent of deaths, according to the U.S. Coast Guard 2015 Recreational Boating Statistics Report.
A boating accident attorney is a highly trained, very specialized kind of personal injury attorney who helps injured clients determine the nature of an accident occurring on the water. Boating accident attorneys talk with witnesses who were present at the scene, work with insurance companies, and help to investigate the accident.
If you or a family member is struck by another boat, or if you’re injured on the water due to the fault of another, don’t hesitate to contact a boating accident attorney at Abeyta Nelson Injury Law. Our personal injury attorneys have 130 years of combined experience in fighting for your rights in court, or negotiating a settlement out of the courtroom. We’ve practiced personal injury law in Central Washington for 40 years, and we know boating accident law. Contact Abeyta Nelson Injury Law today for a free consultation.