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September 12, 2023

When Is a Boat Operator Required to Assist Anyone Injured in an Accident?

In the unsettling moments following a boat accident, your initial response can have significant implications. Your actions can affect the safety of those aboard your vessel and also influence potential legal proceedings. That’s why it’s important to understand your obligations and requirements as a boat operator, particularly when it comes to assisting injured individuals. In this article, we will explore when a boat operator is required to assist anyone injured in an accident and answer frequently asked questions on this subject.

The first thing a boat operator should do after a crash is verify the safety of everyone on board. If it is safe to do so, they should stop their boat at the scene of the accident and assess whether any passengers are injured or if the accident caused substantial damage to the vessel. It is illegal to leave the scene of a boating accident, and doing so could lead to serious legal penalties.

Once the safety of all individuals has been established, the boat operator should call for help on a radio or mobile phone. They should provide the necessary information including their location, the specifics of the incident, and any details about the injured person or their boat.

Boat operators should ensure that their vessels are equipped with emergency equipment, such as lifejackets, fire extinguishers, and flotation devices, before each outing. They should also be familiar with the area in which they plan to sail and take into consideration any current weather conditions or forecasts, as these may impact their ability to navigate the waters safely.