Wisconsin is home to about 15, 000 lakes and has access to Lake Michigan, Lake Superior, and the Mississippi River. Nestled close to Lake Michigan, Green Bay is a prime location to take out a boat on the water during a hot summer day. Although boat owners typically take out their boats during popular holidays such as the 4th of July, Memorial Day, and Labor Day, Wisconsin boat owners have the option to take advantage of the beautiful blue waters of Lake Michigan any day they want, as long as the weather is cooperative.
Although it can be a lot of fun to hang out on a boat and partake in boating activities such as tubing and jet skiing, boaters must also be careful to avoid a boating accident. In fact, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources released an annual report stating that there were 87 boating accidents resulting in 13 fatalities in 2013. However, the report also indicated that the amount of Wisconsin boating accidents and fatalities was lower in 2013 than in previous years.
Wisconsin Law Regarding Boating Accidents
Wisconsin law is clear on how to proceed when a person who operates a boat is involved in a boating accident. For example, when a boating accident results in injury, death, or property damage of $2, 000 or more, the operator of the boat must:
Stop the boat at the scene of the accident;
Offer assistance to any injured parties if possible; and
Provide in writing their name, address, and boat information to the injured party.
The operator of the boat who caused the accident is also required to make a verbal report to a Department of Natural Resources warden immediately following the accident. Failure to comply with these rules may result in serious consequences.
Recovering for Injuries Sustained in a Boating Accident
Similar to most personal injury claims, recovering for injuries that occur as a result of a boating accident is based on fault. Thus, it is imperative to first determine who was at fault for the accident. Boating accidents typically occur for the following reasons:
The operator of the boat was under the influence of alcohol or drugs during the time of the accident;
The operator of the boat was engaging in negligent or reckless conduct;
The boat was obstructing the safe navigation of other boats; or
The boat was being operated under unsafe conditions.
Contact a Wisconsin Boating Accidents Attorney
Boating accidents can result in serious injuries, depending on the circumstances surrounding the accident. If you or a loved one has been the victim of a Wisconsin boating accident, contact an experienced Green Bay boating accidents attorney at [[title]], right away. We will evaluate your case and help you receive the compensation you deserve.