Articles Posted in Boat Accident

shutterstock_400863919-300x200We often think of cars and other road vehicles as high-risk machines that should be operated safely at all times. But boats and other marine craft, even those used for recreation, can bring about accidents, injury, and even death when operated in an unsafe manner.

According to a recent article, a woman experienced serious leg injuries in an accident on Lake Michigan. The woman was on an inflatable raft when a large boat reversed and ran over the device, injuring the woman and another individual. Cell phone footage of the accident shows that she and the other person were sucked under the boat. The severity of the injuries necessitated the amputation of both of her feet. In the days after the amputation the woman expressed shock and difficulty adjusting, imploring boaters to use more caution on busy recreational lakes and waters.

Damages for Serious Injuries in Michigan

Just like careless drivers in car accidents, negligent boat operators can be held liable for a victim’s injuries in civil court. Boat operators who fail to use reasonable care in operating their boats or are under the influence of drugs and alcohol are likely to be found negligent by a jury, which means they may owe you for your economic and emotional damages. Injuries, particularly injuries that result in scarring and disfigurement, can be financially compensated for in court through both types of damages award. And when video footage of the accident is available, as in the recent accident, victims may be able to more easily prove the cause of their harms.

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The Michigan Appeals Court recently affirmed the lower court’s grant of summary disposition to a defendant in a Michigan boating accident case. Specifically, the appeals court held that the plaintiffs failed to demonstrate a genuine dispute of material fact regarding defective design and failure to warn.The plaintiff was injured while pontoon boating in June 2013. Before the accident, her husband purchased a boat hoist and a canopy frame manufactured and sold by defendant NuCraft. He also purchased a vinyl canopy from the defendant. He testified that, at some point before the night of the accident, he spoke with NuCraft’s vice president about how to best install the canopy. He planned to use the hoist and the canopy assembly for a boat that he kept at his mother’s cottage on Lake Margrethe.

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Last month, sailboat skipper Daniel O’Keefe reportedly sued another captain for allegedly injuring him in a major crash on Lake Michigan. The Ottawa County resident was injured during the Macatawa Bay Yacht Club’s S2 7.9 Class Championship Regatta in August 2014. Race records indicate that O’Keefe was operating a 26-foot boat called “Kaboom,” while the other captain’s similarly-sized boat was called “VOOM!”O’Keefe almost drowned after being slammed in the chest by the bow of the other boat. Unconscious, he was thrown into the water. O’Keefe broke several ribs and experienced heart failure and a heart contusion. He will require oxygen treatment for life, according to the lawsuit. The lawsuit seeks over $1 million in damages.

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