Tennessee Boating Accident Statistics

Maryville Attorney Serving Watercraft Injury Victims in East Tennessee

Boating in Tennessee is a popular pastime. The total number of boats registered in the state in 2012 was 259,632. The accident rate for that year was 65.8 per 100,000 registered boats. The costs of boating accidents are high, and the total costs caused by boating accidents in 2012 was $2,306,012. The leading primary causes of these accidents were distracted boating operators and failures to keep a proper lookout. Moreover, alcohol and drug use played a role in some accidents. It is important to be aware of your rights and obligations as a boating operator or passenger in East Tennessee. Maryville boating accident lawyer Mark Hartsoe can help you pursue damages if you have been harmed in an accident caused by someone else.

Tennessee Boating Accident Statistics

In 2012, there were 18 boating fatalities in Tennessee and 94 accidents that caused injuries. The greatest number of fatalities were linked to falls overboard, with the primary causes of these accidents being alcohol use and weather conditions. Open motorboats were the boats most commonly involved in these accidents. Boat operators have a responsibility to use reasonable care while boating and may be held responsible for any damages arising from injuries if the accident victim can establish negligence.

Negligence occurs if the defendant failed to act in a reasonably safe way, and this failure was the cause of the victim’s injuries. For example, if a boating operator was not paying attention to weather changes, the water got rough, and the boating operator did not have enough personal safety devices, it is likely that a jury would find that these negligent acts were the cause of any injuries or deaths.

However, in some cases, a Tennessee defendant may successfully raise an act of God defense. This defense provides that a defendant will not have liability if their actions did not contribute to an accident, and the cause of the accident was a phenomenal weather event outside their control. There are occasions in which bodies of water are unexpectedly and adversely affected by weather.

In addition, defendants may raise the argument of comparative negligence. Generally, a defendant boating operator is unlikely to be successful in raising this defense against a passenger. On the other hand, if two boating operators were both negligent and crashed into each other, the issue of comparative negligence may arise. If you are injured partly as a result of your own fault, the jury will determine the total damages and assign a percentage of fault to you and others. Assuming that your fault was below 50 percent, however, you still may be able to receive damages that are proportionate to the defendant’s fault.

Consult Maryville Lawyer Mark Hartsoe After a Boating Accident

Tennessee boating accident statistics are sobering and show the importance of boating operators taking precautionary steps, such as making sure to have safety equipment and avoiding alcohol while boating. Call Maryville boating accident attorney Mark Hartsoe at (865) 524-5657 or contact us via our online form to set up your free appointment. Mark Hartsoe assists people who need a watercraft injury lawyer throughout East Tennessee, including in Blount, Knox, Monroe, Loudon, Jefferson, Grainger, Cocke, Campbell, Hamblen, Greene, Anderson, Cumberland, and Fentress Counties.

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