What to Do Immediately After a Boating Accident
Knowing what to do immediately after a boating accident can make a significant difference in the outcome of any legal actions you may need to take. At www.888BoatLaw,com the Law Offices of Frank D. Butler, PA, we’ve put together this guide to help you navigate the crucial moments following a boating accident.
Ensure Everyone’s Safety
The first priority is to make sure everyone is safe. Check for injuries among all passengers and administer first aid if necessary. If anyone is seriously injured, call for emergency medical assistance immediately.
Report the Accident
Florida law mandates the reporting of boating accidents that result in injury, death, or significant property damage. Contact the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission or the local marine patrol to report the incident. In addition the U.S. Coast Guard requires the captain of the involved vessel to complete and file a for “2692” in serious injury and significant property damages cases. 2692 Reporting Forms & NVIC 01-15 (uscg.mil)
Stay at the Scene
Leaving the scene of a boating accident is not only irresponsible but also illegal. Ensure all vessels involved remain at the accident site until authorities arrive unless there’s a safety concern that necessitates moving.
Document the Incident
Use your smartphone to take pictures and video of the accident scene, including any damages to the boats involved and visible injuries. This visual evidence is often crucial and invaluable when making an insurance claim or pursuing legal action.
Gather Witness Information
If there are any witnesses to the accident, collect their contact information. Eyewitness accounts can provide an unbiased perspective that may support your case.
File an Official Report
Once the authorities arrive, cooperate fully and provide all the necessary details for the official report. Make sure to get a copy of this report for your records.
Notify Your Insurance Company
Contact your boating insurance provider as soon as possible to report the accident. Provide them with all the details and documentation you’ve gathered.
Seek Medical Attention
Even if you feel fine, it’s crucial to get a medical evaluation. Some injuries may not manifest symptoms immediately but could become serious later on.
Consult a Maritime Law Expert
Boating accidents that occur on open waters fall under maritime law, a specialized legal area. Consult an attorney experienced in maritime law to understand your rights and the best course of action.
Keep All Documentation
Retain all medical records, repair bills, and any other documents related to the accident. These will be crucial when making an insurance claim or taking legal action. Preserve all electronic data including GPS, chart-plotter and radar information in the event of a boating collision.
Contact the Law Offices of Frank D. Butler, PA
Boating accidents can be overwhelming, and the involvement of maritime law adds another layer of complexity to an already stressful situation. At the www.888BoatLaw.com Law Offices of Frank D. Butler, PA, we specialize in maritime law and are committed to guiding you every step of the way to obtain the compensation you deserve.
Our team of experienced attorneys and dedicated support staff work collaboratively to build a strong case for you. From gathering evidence to handling paperwork and negotiations, we take care of all the details, allowing you to focus on your recovery. Trust our 25 years experience in Florida successfully handling boating accident injury cases.