When you board a ship or boat, you expect that everything is in good working order and that the operator and crew are competent and knowledgeable. Unfortunately, far too often operator error, carelessness, or defective or unsafe products and machinery aboard a watercraft can result in serious and sometimes fatal accidents. This can include everything from minor fires to explosions, collisions, and even the sinking or grounding of the vessel.
Many people incorrectly believe that if they board a ship or boat, they are responsible for any associated risk. This is not always true. Sometimes the operator, boat owner, manufacturer, maintenance provider, or crew are responsible. Accidents can occur because of functional errors like operating the vessel at high or unsafe speeds or in poor weather, failing to properly spot guests who are water skiing or tubing, or an owner overloading his or her vessel.
Unfortunately, injuries and deaths can also occur as a result of defective or unsafe products and machinery, such as defective steering controls, engines, propellers, fuel tanks, wires, safety equipment and more.
Maritime law is complex and differs greatly from that of land-based law. If you have been injured in a boat or ship accident and want to understand your legal rights, talk to us. Our lawyers have an in-depth understanding of the ship and boat safety laws and nautical rules. We can help you claim the compensation to which you are entitled.