What Should I Do If I’m in a Boat Crash?
Recently, WRAL-TV reported on a boating accident that happened in late October at the Lake Auman dam in Seven Lakes, NC. The wreck resulted in injuries to multiple people who were aboard the small boat when it crashed. The incident happened at night and only involved the lone vessel, according to the report.
Lake Auman is a private 800-acre lake located in Moore County. The lake is part of the communities known as Seven Lakes West. Lake Auman includes a dam, which, as reported, is where the crash took place. The boating accident happened when the vessel hit the dam, which caused it to leave the water and ultimately end up on top of the dam.
Emergency officials responded to the accident scene about 10:30 pm. The injury victims were taken to the hospital for treatment, but there was no word on the severity of their conditions included in the WRAL-TV report. Authorities were still investigating the incident, including what caused the wreck, at the time of this writing.
What to Do Following a Boating Accident
After a boating accident, it can be difficult to know what you should do next. Here are a few tips about what to do if you’re involved in a boat crash:
- Call 911 or the Coast Guard, and make sure anyone who needs medical assistance receives it
- If you’re near the shore, try to make it back to shore
- When you talk to the 911 operator or Coast Guard, let them know your exact location, including longitude and latitude, if possible
- Get the names and contact information of everyone involved in the wreck as well as any witnesses
- If another boat was involved, get that boat’s operator’s insurance information
- Stay at the scene of the accident until authorities say you can leave unless your injuries prevent it
- Tell the authorities the truth about the accident but do not admit fault
- File an accident report with your state boating authority and/or the Coast Guard
- If your boat wreck occurred in the ocean or in the waterway, then federal law may apply instead of North Carolina law and contributory negligence cannot be used as a defense against the injured victims.
- Talk to a personal injury lawyer about your situation and the best options for you and your family going forward
- The injury attorneys at Riddle and Brantley have handled several boating wrecks/accidents in the past and are eager to review your case and help you
Have you ever been in a boat wreck? If so, do you have any tips you can pass along that might help others if they’re ever involved in a boating accident? Feel free to share them in the comment section below or on our firm’s Facebook, Twitter or Google+ pages.