What Are Common Injuries Resulting From Boating Accidents?

Boats are large watercraft vehicles designed with minimal protection for passengers who can become seriously injured in a collision. Below is a list of common injuries that occur due to boating accidents:

  • Broken or fractured bones
  • Neck injuries
  • Back injuries
  • Severe bruising
  • Drowning
  • Concussions
  • Internal injuries
  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Paralysis

How Do Boating Accidents Occur?

Like motor vehicle accidents, boating collisions can occur for a number of reasons. Fortunately, most boating accidents are and can be completely avoidable. The most common causes of boating accidents include the following:

  • Impaired Boaters:

Many boaters enjoy consuming alcoholic beverages before or while driving a watercraft. Not only is boating under the influence of alcohol or drugs against the law, but it is an extremely dangerous practice that can leave passengers at risk for serious injury.

  • Boaters Who Lack Experience:

A boat’s maneuverability is far different from that of a motor vehicle. For this reason, an inexperienced boater can jeopardize the safety of passengers aboard the boat and passengers of other boats.

  • Distracted Boaters:

A boater can become cognitively, visually, and physically distracted – just like the driver of a car can lose focus in various ways. Boaters who talk on their cell phones, text, eat, or participate in any other distracting activities jeopardize the safety of passengers.

What is a leading contributor to boating accidents?

Boating can become extremely dangerous if boaters don’t practice safe operating habits. According to the U.S. Coast Guard Office of Auxiliary and Boating Safety, in 2021 there were 658 recreational boating fatalities nationwide. The biggest contributing factor in fatal boating accidents in 2021 was alcohol. This accounted for 86 deaths, or 16 percent of total fatalities.