A recent court case in Charleston, SC demonstrated how alcohol and boating do not mix. The court returned a $1.9M verdict for a young lady whose leg was severely injured by the propeller on the boat engine. While the sober captain was slowly motoring through a narrow waterway, a drunken passenger leaped overboard. The captain stopped to retrieve him whereupon several other passengers also leaped overboard. In the process of trying to retrieve the overboard passengers, the captain backed over the victim, severely injuring her leg. Multiple surgeries were required, and her life as a fitness buff, trainer, and marathoner was changed irrevocably.
The court ruled that though the captain was sober, he had a duty to protect his passengers – even though they were intoxicated – and to know their whereabouts to ensure safety.
Are you a boat owner? If so, it’s important to know your legal responsibilities for yourself and your passengers. Liability in this instance was solely the captain’s, so use precaution on the water.
If you have questions about your legal boating rights, or in the event of a boating or maritime accident, please do not hesitate to contact Barrow Law Firm. We will help you understand the law and sort through any legal measures.