Whether for commercial use, transportation, or vacation, boating is an excellent pastime for getting outdoors and enjoying all Pennsylvania has to offer. Unfortunately, while most operate their vessels with prudence and respect for the rules of the water, other inexperienced or careless boaters can pose a significant threat of harm.
If you are injured by a negligent boat operator, you could benefit from speaking to a Johnstown boat accident lawyer. Due to the size and velocity of boats, along with the lack of restraints for occupants, even the smallest collision can result in substantial injuries. Following such an incident, you could be facing significant medical bills and have ongoing physical and psychological damage. An experienced Johnstown personal injury lawyer could examine your situation, explain your legal rights, and discuss potential courses of action to pursue financial compensation for your damages.
Common Causes of Boat Collisions
Spring and summer months are the most popular times for people to go boating. This results in a higher quantity of watercraft, and if inexperienced boaters are involved, the chances of an accident increase. Some of the most common causes of boating crashes include:
- Operator inattention
- Improper lookout
- Inexperienced operators
- Excessive speed
- Impaired operators due to alcohol or drugs
- Equipment failure
- Violation of navigational rules
- Wake forces
- Dangerous waterways
To file a boating injury claim in Johnstown, an attorney must prove the driver who struck the plaintiff was operating his or her vessel negligently. This requires gathering evidence such as witness testimony and photographs of the scene.
Modified Comparative Negligence in Johnstown
Often in a watercraft accident case, a defendant will deny being responsible for the accident. Fortunately, in Johnstown, even if a boat accident victim is found to be partially at fault for his or her injuries, an attorney could still seek damages on his or her behalf.
Pennsylvania follows a rule of modified comparative negligence, pursuant to 42 P.S. §7102.In a modified comparative negligence state like Pennsylvania, as long as the plaintiff is found to be less than 50 percent at-fault for the accident, he or she can still make a recovery. However, a victim’s total damages award would be reduced by the percentage of his or her fault. For example, if a plaintiff were awarded $100,000 but were determined to be 30 percent at-fault for the accident, the plaintiff would still collect $70,000.
Seek Out a Johnston Boat Accident Attorney for Help
If you or a loved one were injured in a collision with a negligent boat operator, you might be able to pursue compensation for your losses from the responsible party. With the help of a Johnstown boat accident lawyer, you could seek recovery for medical bills, property damage, physical pain, and emotional suffering.
After analyzing your case, a dedicated attorney may be able to discuss your legal options and begin to work toward a favorable resolution to your situation. However, it is imperative that you act quickly. In Pennsylvania, a victim must file a suit within two years from the date of the injury. Call Marcus & Mack now to get started.