Maritime accidents take place on a daily basis. While incidents involving larger vessels like cruise ships garner the most attention, maritime accidents that involve smaller personal water crafts are no less tragic. The family of one Rotorua teenager who was killed in a jet ski accident is now taking a stand to raise safety awareness in order to help prevent similar accidents from taking place.
In their report, Recreational Boating Statistics 2011, the U.S. Coast Guard shows that accidents involving personal water crafts (like jet skis) resulted in 808 casualties last year – the Roturua teenager being one of these victims. The incident took place in January last year, when 17-year-old Bishop Thompson was riding on a jet ski on Lake Okareka in New Zealand. Thompson, who was not wearing a life jacket, fell off his jet ski and was struck by another water craft that was being operated by one of his friends. Two teens involved in the incident were charged with violating maritime rules.
Now, Thompson’s family is starting a safety campaign to raise awareness of maritime rules and how to prevent accidents like this one from taking place. The campaign, which also has the support of Rotorua-based Olympic kayaker Luuka Jones and Kiwi pro surfer Matt Hewitt, will involve harbor masters, maritime officers and volunteers who will be teaching jet ski riders how to have fun while upholding safety rules. The campaigners will be advocating the use of life jackets and encouraging others to go on a Coastguard skipper’s course that will teach them all they need to know about maritime regulations in order to stay safe.
Personal water crafts account for a large portion of boating accidents at sea. Jet skis and wave runners are very fast and operators can lose control of them easily, which can lead to severe injuries or fatalities. Many accidents involving personal water crafts occur because the driver was inexperienced, not paying attention to their surroundings, or operating while under the influence or alcohol or drugs. As tragic as these types of maritime accidents can be, it is imperative that victims and their loved ones understand that they have a right to seek legal help. If you or someone you love was involved in an accident with a jet ski or any other type of personal water craft, turn to Lipcon, Margulies, Alsina & Winkleman, P.A. immediately to file a case.
Whether the incident took place on navigable waters, where admiralty and maritime law might apply, or non-navigable waters, like a small lake, where state jurisdiction applies, Lipcon boating accident lawyers will see to it that your rights are fully protected. With over 165 years of combined experience representing those involved in accidents at sea, our attorneys will help you obtain the compensation you deserve for your pain and suffering. Contact Lipcon today for more information regarding personal water craft accidents and to get started on your case.