Spring is here and that means many of us will soon be heading out to enjoy a day relaxing by the water, fishing on a boat, or having a fun afternoon of water-based activities like water skiing, wakeboarding, or parasailing.
Along with providing the perfect opportunity for rest and relaxation (as well as plenty of interesting social media post), these activities can also put people at risk of severe injuries if an accident occurs. While no one gets on a boat or jet ski anticipating an injury, they do happen in lakes, rivers, and other bodies of water every single day. When these injuries occur due to someone else’s negligence or reckless actions, like boating while intoxicated, you may be able to take legal action.
Your Houston maritime attorneys at Lapeze & Johns PLLC, have plenty of experience helping victims and their families take legal action following an accident caused by someone else. From intoxicated boaters to unsafe water conditions, we can hold the negligent party responsible and get you the financial compensation you deserve.
Below you will find the most common types of water-based injuries and a few tips on how to avoid them.
Common Types of Water-Based Activity Injuries
There’s nothing quite like enjoying a nice dip in cool water on a hot day. Unfortunately, water-based activities can put you at risk of serious and life-threatening injuries when someone else acts recklessly.
One of the most common types of injury while on the water is drowning. A reported 400,000 people drown every year, and the risk is unusually high for children. At the beach, the risk is especially significant because of tides and undertows, putting those who fall overboard or go too far out from shore, in peril. To reduce your risk of injury while on the water, it’s essential to prepare and act as responsibly as you can.
Alongside drowning, a few other of the most common water-based activities include:
- Boating collisions
- Defective water sport equipment
- Defective boat design leading to capsizing
- Diving injuries
- Injuries caused by boats running aground
- Scuba diving accidents
- Watersports accidents
Some practical ways you can minimize your risk of injury during water-based activities include the following:
- From jet skis to wakeboards, make sure you know how to properly operate and use all vehicles or devices before going out on the water.
- Before getting in the water, check and make sure you have and are wearing all recommended safety equipment like lifejackets or other flotation devices. Be sure these devices are not damaged and are inflated correctly. If you are a parent, make sure children are outfitted with all proper safety gear at all times.
- Like safety gear, check all recreational equipment to make sure they are not damaged and work correctly.
- Just like on land, never operate a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol. This includes all types of boats, jet skis, and any other water-based activity equipment. You should also be aware of who is driving the boat at all times and make sure no one else you are with is drinking and driving.
- Look at weather reports and avoid going far out in the ocean on a boat or swimming during inclement weather.
- Be aware of other people and vehicles in the water. By maintaining this level of awareness, you can avoid collisions with other boats or individuals.
- Make sure someone in your group is up to date on CPR and first aid in case of an accident. Performing these life-saving techniques can buy you valuable time while you get back to shore and to the hospital.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a maritime accident, let the Houston attorneys of Lapeze & Johns offer their dedicated support and guidance to you.
By knowing how to behave responsibly and safely on the water, you can significantly reduce the risk of an accident and injury during water-based activities. But even if you behave responsibly, accidents can still occur when other people behave negligently.