Residents and summer visitors to Nevada are no strangers to the heatwaves and blistering sun that the state experiences in the summer months. Temperatures in Nevada can top 100 degrees, causing many families to pack their backs and head out on vacation. Often times a fun activity to escape Nevada’s scorching heat is the take a weekend or week-long boating adventure. While boating can be fun, it can also be extremely dangerous. This is particularly true if boat captains who are inexperienced, reckless, or inebriated take the wheel and get out on Nevada’s waters. When best boating safety practices are unknown or ignored, the result can be tragic.
Dangers of Boating in Nevada
While you may not be able to control the actions of others this summer while enjoying Nevada’s waters, there are several safety tips you can follow to keep yourself and your loved ones safe. The United States Coast Guard’s Office of Auxiliary and Boating Safety reports there are more than 4,000 serious boating accidents reported annually in the United States. Moreover, 660 watercraft fatalities are also reported each year. The most common causes of these types of boating accidents and watercraft fatalities include:
Inexperience of the boat operator;
Inattention of the boat operator;
Machinery failure or defect;
Use of alcohol or drugs;
Violations of navigational rules;
Poor weather conditions; and
Simply put, when it comes to your safety and health and that of others, you cannot take any chances. In order to be a responsible boater in Nevada you must follow all federal and state boating laws, avoid hazards that are preventable, and be ready to handle the unexpected.
Staying Safe in Nevada
Our attorneys have represented boating accident victims across Nevada for years and have witnessed the financial, legal, and personal harm these accidents can cause. Below are several tips you can follow to keep yourself and your loved ones safe on our waters during the hot summer months:
Learn the local navigation rules and regulations;
Have monthly boat maintenance routines with a professional;
Keep updated on the weather and any alerts;
Stay docked if weather makes it unsafe to be on the waters;
Be sure to dress properly for the weather;
Let others on shore know where you are going and when you should return;
Pack enough water to stay hydrated and enough food in case of an emergency;
Make sure every person and animal on the boat is wearing a U.S. Coast Guard approved life jacket, whether or not they are good swimmers;
Sound your boat’s horn if a passenger goes overboard or if the water gets too choppy;
Be sure to operate your boat at a safe speed and operate defensively; and
Have a Float Plan including itinerary, boat registration information, available ways of communication, as well as the names and phone numbers of those with you.
Nevada Accident Attorneys
Under Nevada law, all boaters are legally responsible for operating a vessel or watercraft in a safe manner and in consideration of others. If you or someone you care about has been hurt in a Nevada boating accident due to the negligence of another, contact the skilled attorneys at Parry & Pfau. Our experienced lawyers will investigate your case and pursue the best result possible under the law.
(image courtesy of Maxi Am Brunnen)