When people think of accidents, they are thinking about automobile collisions. These are common in Maryland and across the nation. The statistics for road crashes are increasing. However, injuries and loss of life can happen under many other circumstances, not just for drivers, passengers, motorcyclists, bicyclists and pedestrians.
Specifically, during the summer months, when people are enjoying the warm weather and boating, there is a significant chance of incidents and accidents that can be just as damaging as car and truck crashes.
Boat accidents happen regularly and it is wise to know how to stay safe
State agencies like the Maryland Natural Resources Police (NRP) are giving tips to maintain safety when on or near the water. Statistically, water-based accidents are a persistent challenge. In 2021, Maryland had 51 boat accident injuries and six fatalities. Overall, 145 incidents were reported. In 2020, there were 65 injuries and seven fatalities in 155 accidents.
Some of the common factors that lead to water accidents are intoxication, negligence and recklessness. Law enforcement is out and about to cite those who violate the law, but just like on the road, they cannot be everywhere nor catch everyone. Often, the most effective strategies are the simplest. That includes having the proper types of life jackets; being fully prepared with a first-aid kit and fire extinguishers and checking the weather before heading out.
Despite that, people who are enjoying a day on the water tend to forget the fundamentals of safety. They could drink too much alcohol, decide to operate their vessel at excessive speed, not pay attention to what they are doing and make other missteps that lead to accidents.
If boat and water accidents happen, it is vital to know what to do in the aftermath
When on a boat, being vigilant is important. This can prevent an accident with personal injury and death. However, even that does not always work. For people who are wondering about their options after a boat accident, it is useful to understand the challenges they are likely to face and how to address them.
Medical costs, inability to work, needing to take care of a loved one and long-term issues can occur. It is essential to consult with experienced professionals who can assess the situation and help with moving forward.