Riding jet skis at the Lake of the Ozarks can be a thrilling experience. This is why many people, including tourists, engage in the activity every year. However, even though jet skis are a lot of fun, they are also heavy machines without any passenger protection.
Therefore, when these water vehicles turn upside down in the water or crash into other watercraft or people, the resulting injuries can be catastrophic. Injured victims have been known to suffer concussions, brain damage, spinal cord damage, deep cuts, and even death.
For example, popular R&B singer, Usher Raymond’s stepson was killed after a jet ski rammed into his tube. If you or a loved one was injured in a jet ski accident in the Ozarks, our Lake of the Ozarks jet ski accident attorneys can help you pursue and recover damages.
Proving Negligence and Liability in an Ozarks Jet Ski Accident
According to the 2021 U.S. Coast Guard Boating Safety Statistics Report, there were over 4,400 boating accidents which led to 2,641 injuries and 658 deaths. Personal watercraft like jet skis were responsible for 725 accidents, 55 of which were fatalities.
These are alarming stats when you consider that most of these accidents were caused by recklessness and could have been prevented if jet skiers had been more careful. In fact, the Lake of the Ozarks is popular in the country for boating accidents.
And most of these accidents were caused by the following:
Lack of Experience
Because it’s easy to rent a jet ski and take a safety course in the Ozarks, most people can easily learn and ride the watercraft within 30 minutes. Unfortunately, just because they can start and steer the craft doesn’t mean that they’re good enough to ride the jet skis. Sadly, this is often the case and that inexperience typically ends up costing people their lives or injuring them at the very least.
Negligence by the Operator
Negligence can take many forms. These include speeding on the water, sudden maneuvers, driving the jet ski near people who are swimming, riding close to other boats and watercraft, and riding during bad weather.
Driving the Jet Ski While Under the Influence
Apart from the fact that boating under the influence (BUI) is illegal in Missouri, riders who are under the influence of drugs, alcohol, and other illicit substances pose a danger to other people on the lake.
Unfortunately, because jet skiing is a recreational activity, it’s not often unusual to find people who are intoxicated getting on these watercraft. Alcohol, drugs, and other illicit substances can cloud your judgment, impair your motor skills, and cause you to make rash decisions while driving a jet ski. This can lead to terrible and catastrophic jet ski accidents.
Riding at Top Speeds When Visibility Is Poor
The lake of the Ozarks has many winding turns. Speeding excessively while taking these turns means that the drivers will have little or no time to react and avoid collisions if they run into other boats or watercraft.
The same applies to when you’re driving at night. This is why the U.S. Coast Guards have a statutory 30 mph max speed limit for all watercraft at night.
When you hire a jet ski accident lawyer in Ozarks, the attorney will look into these and other possible causes of your accident. Then, they’ll try to determine who was liable for the accident.
If the attorney finds that another jet ski driver, boater, or swimmer, through their recklessness or negligence, caused your accident and subsequent injuries, the lawyer will file a compensation claim against the at-fault party and show the courts that their negligent or reckless actions or omissions led to your injuries.
If the courts find your allegations against the defendant to be true, the court will award you considerable damages that match your losses.
For a free legal consultation with a jet ski accidents lawyer serving Lake of the Ozarks, call 573-744-4878
Recoverable Damages in a Lake of the Ozarks Jet Ski Accident
Being injured in a Lake of the Ozarks jet ski accident while having fun can take a considerable toll on your life, well-being, and finances. Therefore, depending on the circumstances of the accident and other factors, you may qualify to receive certain damages.
Specifically, some of the damages that you may be able to recover include:
- Lost wages and income
- Reduced earning capacity
- Property damage and repair costs
- Past and future medical expenses
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional trauma
- Mental distress or anguish
- Loss of quality of life
- Loss of companionship
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Wrongful death
These are the major damages that you can claim. In most cases, injured victims who are alive will not be able to claim loss of companionship and wrongful death damages. Please note that Missouri is a comparative negligence state.
So, if you’re partly responsible for the accident and ensuing damages, how much you’ll get as damages will be affected by the degree to which you’re responsible. For example, if you were 20 percent at fault and were supposed to receive $100,000 in compensation, you’ll only get $80,000.
If you’d like to know what damages you qualify for, our Ozarks jet ski accident attorneys at Dickman Law Injury Attorneys will provide sound legal advice and file the compensation claim against the necessary entities.
Lake of the Ozarks Jet Ski Accident Lawyer Near Me 573-744-4878
Hire a Lake of the Ozarks Jet Ski Accident Attorney
Dickman Law’s Lake of the Ozarks jet ski lawyers are skilled and experienced at litigating and filing personal injury claims. We will work hard to ensure that you get adequate compensation for your injuries and property damage. We know that this is a very trying time for you. So, you should be focused on full recovery instead of worrying about where the money to pay for your treatment or property repairs will come from.
Let our seasoned attorney file your compensation claim and pursue your settlement while you get better. Contact us today for a free case evaluation.