A man had both legs amputated after he was struck by a boat propeller last week in the water near Third Avenue South in Myrtle Beach.

The US Coast Guard said the man was trying to transfer from a parasailing boat to a banana boat when he fell into the water and was hit by the parasailing boat’s propeller.

This tragedy may seem extreme, but these kinds of accidents are more common than most people realize.

In 2017, there were 172 boating accidents in the US in which at least one person was hit by a propeller, resulting in 31 deaths and 162 injuries, according to the Coast Guard.

How Common Are Boating Accidents?

Here are some other boating accident statistics from last year:

  • There were 4,291 recreational boating accidents in the US, resulting in 658 deaths and 2,629 injuries;
  • In SC, there were 151 accidents, resulting in 13 deaths;
  • Alcohol use is the leading contributing factor in recreational boating accident deaths; and
  • More than three-quarters of fatal boating accident victims drowned, and 85 percent of them were not wearing a life jacket.

How Can I Prevent Boating Accidents?

The statistics make it clear that there are a few things you can do to protect yourself when you hit the water.

Wearing a lifejacket and avoiding alcohol if you plan to operate a boat can save your life, and most people know to avoid going out on recreational boats during bad weather. Unfortunately, federal statistics also make it clear the majority of boating accidents are caused by human error and negligence during good weather when the sun is shining, and the wind and water are calm.

Common causes of boating accidents include:

  • Striking or being struck by another boat;
  • Hitting another boat’s wake;
  • Striking a rock, another object, or land;
  • Lack of safety equipment.
  • Reckless operation;
  • Inexperienced drivers; and
  • Inappropriate weight.

Can I Collect Damages After A Boating Accident Injury?

Like car accidents, most boating accidents are caused by someone’s negligence. Boat operators have a duty to act with a level of care that a reasonable person would exercise in a similar situation.

If you are injured after another boater hits your vessel, you can file a claim against the other driver, the owner of the boat, or the rental company. In some cases, passengers may be held http://coastal-law.com/practice-areas/personal-injury/boating-accident/liable if they acted in a negligent or reckless manner.

If you are in a single-boat accident, you may be able to collect damages from your own insurance policy, the boat owner’s policy, or the rental company, depending on the circumstances.

Myrtle Beach Boating Accident Lawyers

If you have been injured in a boating accident in South Carolina, your personal injury lawyer at Coastal Law will help you determine who was at fault, what sources of recovery are available, and how to collect damages.

Call the SC boating accident attorneys at Coastal Law now at (843) 488-5000 or contact us through our website to speak with an attorney today.

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