Boat Accidents in Maine

Boat accidents are a frequent occurrence in Maine, given the opportunities we have to enjoy the water. When boat accidents occur, innocent people and their loved ones suffer, especially when the victim dies as a result of the accident. There are numerous causes for boat accidents, and most occur when someone or multiple people have acted negligently. Causes of boat accidents include, but certainly are not limited to, the following:

  • Inattentive operation of a boat or other watercraft;
  • Boat operators and passengers who are under the influence of alcohol while on the water;
  • Speeding;
  • Mechanical failures that cause boats and other watercraft to malfunction;
  • Bad weather; and
  • Low visibility.

Many boat accidents are preventable if boat operators and passengers adhere to safety procedures. Because our waters are becoming more and more crowded, boat accidents are likely to continue. Innocent individuals injured in boating accidents may suffer severe injuries such as loss of limb, paralysis, fractures, and damage to internal organs, among other injuries.

Private Boats v. Commercial Boats

If you are a passenger on a private boat and are injured after a collision or other incident that causes harm, you may be entitled to compensation from the boat operator for his or her negligent conduct. If you are a passenger on a commercial boat, such as a ferry or charter boat, the captain or operator is held to a very high standard of care as he or she has unique knowledge and experience as a professional captain. As such, you may be entitled to compensation from the owner of the commercial boat, as the boat owner would be responsible for the captain or operator’s negligence.

Common Boat Accidents

Most boat accidents occur when operators are inattentive and end up colliding with another boat or other watercraft, such as a jet ski. Inattentive operation of a boat is negligent as this conduct is not what a reasonable boat operator would be doing, as an ordinary and reasonable boat operator would follow the rules and pay attention. When a boat operator has not acted in accordance with the standard of care, and causes a boat accident, he or she may be held responsible for the injuries suffered as a result of the accident. Such innocent victims are then entitled to compensation.

Further, many boat accidents occur when boat operators and passengers are drinking. Even though many boats are idle in the waters and the occupants are simply relaxing and enjoying themselves, the fact that drinking is involved means that the occupants will not be fully aware of, and attentive to, their surroundings. Also, when boat operators and passengers are under the influence of alcohol, they are not able to swim as well and are at risk for drowning. Alcohol-related boat accidents are much like drunk driving accidents in that the drunk boat operator is held responsible for causing harm to anyone injured in a boat accident.

A potential boat accident claim must be thoroughly evaluated by a highly skilled Maine boat accident attorney. It is sometimes difficult to establish fault in boat accident cases, but with the help and advice of a qualified attorney, you may receive compensation for your pain and suffering.

Contact Peter Thompson & Associates Today to Schedule a Consultation

Peter Thompson & Associates represents boat accident victims, helping them receive the compensation they are entitled to. Our attorneys provide excellent legal services to individuals from all over the state of Maine, with three convenient office locations in Portland, which is our main office, Falmouth, and Bangor. To schedule a consultation with one of our attorneys, contact Peter Thompson & Associates today by calling toll-free at 1 800.804.2004 to schedule a consultation, or you may contact us online and we will respond to you as soon as possible.

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I feel I was treated with respect and was always 'kept in the loop' of what was happening throughout this process. I felt that I could ask any question and always receive an honest and professional response. K.L., Lewiston
Although this has been a difficult time, you have made this much easier by your thoughtfulness and professionalism. M.W., Portland
I would like to thank you for all your help, and taking the time to help me understand things. T.C., South Portland
I am very satisfied with the great people at [your office]. Especially Wendy Clark and Mrs. Mann. Very happy, very pleased. Thank you. D.M., Arundel
I was pleased with the level of professionalism and the effectiveness of your team. This was my first exposure to 'a case' and you made the process easy for me. M.D., Kittery
My brother is an attorney in New York. After my accident 2 years ago I asked him what firm I should go with. He researched and told me to call Peter Thompson and Associates. I followed his recommendation and am glad I did. From the opening bell they were timely, informative, professional AND WARM. Thank you. R.S., South Portland, ME