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Attorney Jared Pursley
Carlsbad Personal Injury LawyerBlogBoat AccidentTop Three Kinds of Boating Injuries

Top Three Kinds of Boating Injuries


Boating is a very popular recreational activity in California. Boating is also dangerous. Nationwide, boating accidents seriously injure thousands of people every year. Boating, like driving or flying, is an inherently dangerous activity that’s usually, although certainly not always, safe. So, if the weather starts getting rough and the tiny ship is tossed, someone could get seriously injured in one of several ways, which are outlined below.

These cases are very complex, mostly because the boat’s legal owner, as opposed to the person renting the boat, is financially responsible for damages, at least in most cases. These damages include compensation for economic losses, such as medical bills, and noneconomic losses, such as pain and suffering. A Carlsbad boat accident lawyer can also obtain additional punitive damages, in some extreme cases.


Boats have steering wheels, but they don’t have tires or brakes. So, instead of gripping the road tightly, boats float almost uncontrollably. They don’t corner well and they certainly don’t stop quickly. When boats collide with each other or with fixed objects, like docks or the shoreline, the people aboard usually sustain serious injuries, such as:

  • Head Injuries: Boats also don’t have seat belts. So, during crashes, passengers are tossed around even more than the boat. This extreme motion usually causes the brain to slam against the insides of the skull, an impact that causes brain swelling and bleeding.
  • Broken Bones: Extreme, jostling motion often shatters bones, especially arm and leg bones. Boat crashes usually shatter bones. As a result, doctors must use very invasive means to set them, and physical therapists must work extra hard to restore lost function.
  • Internal Injuries: When bones jostle, they break. When internal organs jostle, they bleed. These organs don’t have protective skin layers. So, tiny abrasions bleed badly. Such bleeding is hard to spot and even harder to stop.

Making matters worse, many boat collision injuries happen far out on the water, and the nearest hospital isn’t very near. The delayed treatment transforms serious injuries into catastrophic (life-threatening) injuries.


Slip-and-fall incidents on rolling, pitching, and wet decks often cause similar injuries. The same treatment delay problem also applies.

Usually, boat operators have a duty of care to provide safe environments. They must quickly address fall injury hazards, such as wet spots on the deck.

Fall injuries on boats introduce complex questions about substantial cause and pre-existing conditions.

Rain and waves cause wet spots. But the weather only contributes to a fall injury. Operator negligence substantially causes injury. Other factors, such as the likelihood of serious injury and the ease (or difficulty) of preventing that injury, also apply in California courts.

Frequently, a pre-existing condition, such as a previous knee injury, contributes to the risk and/or severity of a fall injury. An Oceanside personal injury lawyer can usually obtain maximum compensation in these situations. Insurance companies cannot use a victim’s vulnerabilities as an excuse to reduce or deny the compensation outlined above.


Falls often lead to man-overboard drownings. In other cases, victims miss a step and fall into the water. The same legal principles discussed in fall injuries usually apply in drownings. Incidentally, life preservers reduce, but don’t eliminate, the chances of a severe drowning injury.

Rely On a Dedicated San Diego County Lawyer

Injury victims are entitled to substantial compensation. For a free consultation with an experienced personal injury lawyer in Oceanside, contact the Pursley Law Firm. We do not charge upfront legal fees in these matters.



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