Louisiana Jet Ski Accidents

Louisiana Jet Ski Accidents

Jet Ski Accidents In Louisiana 

Jet skiing is an exhilarating and fun water sport. Jet skis are easy and convenient to ride, great stress relievers, good for health, and cost-effective. Jet skiing is an incredibly entertaining and healthy activity for your entire family. There is no lack of waterways to explore in Louisiana. Caddo Lake, Calcasieu Lake, Cane River Lake, False River, Lac Des Allemands, Lake D’Arbonne, and Lake Pontchartrain are perfect for water sports such as jet skiing, water skiing, wakeboarding, and sailing, as well as simply resting and relaxing.

As much as they are fun, jet skis can also cause severe injuries and even death. Jet skis are responsible for hundreds of deaths and accidents every year. The causes of jet ski accidents include alcohol, operator inexperience or inattention, riding at fast speeds, lack of training, reckless behavior, and the lack of protection that boats provide. 

Jet Ski Laws In Louisiana

Personal watercraft devices (PWC), such as jet skis, are a popular water-based activity in Louisiana. 

In Louisiana, operators of a personal watercraft born after January 1, 1984, must complete a boating safety course that has the approval of the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA). Operators must carry proof of completion while operating the jet ski. It is unlawful for anyone under the age of sixteen years to perform a PWC at any time.

Jet skiers must wear a U.S. Coast Guard-approved Type I, II, III, or V Personal Flotation Device (PFD). The use of an inflatable PFD is not permissible. 

Chasing, harassing, or disturbing wildlife with your jet ski is against the law, and operators should avoid fishermen, swimmers, or anchored vessels. 

It is also illegal to operate a PWC between sunset and sunrise.

Louisiana boaters must have a Hull Identification Number(HIN) to operate a vessel legally on Louisiana’s waters. 

In Louisiana, it is against the law for any individual to operate or be in actual physical control of a vessel under power or sail on the waters of Louisiana while being under the influence or having a blood alcohol concentration or breath alcohol concentration that is at least, or higher than 0.08%. For individuals under the age of twenty-one, it is 0.02%. 

Are Liability Waivers In Jet Ski Rental Agreements Enforceable in Louisiana?

A jet ski rental company’s responsibilities include providing working jet skis, functional safety equipment, and adequate training for all drivers. If the rental company does not fulfill its legal responsibilities, you can sue them even if you sign a waiver limiting liability in case of an accident. 

Louisiana is one of only three states that do not uphold liability waivers in court. 

Louisiana Civil Code Article 2004 states, “Any clause is null that, in advance, excludes or limits the liability of one party for causing physical injury to the other party.” 

It’s common for Louisiana business entities to require liability waivers. Many businesses need to beware of Louisiana law, and others use waivers as a deterring tactic.

If you suffer injuries of any kind in a Louisiana jet skiing accident, don’t assume that a waiver prevents you from protecting yourself. 

Jet Ski Injuries

Jet skis offer very little protection in an accident. When a collision, an ejection, or another type of accident occurs, a jet skier may suffer a catastrophic or even fatal injury. Jet ski injuries include broken bones, neck and back injuries, Spinal cord injuries, Traumatic brain injuries, burns, and internal injuries. 

Drownings also frequently accompany boating accidents.

Liable Parties In A Jet Ski Accident 

Jet ski owners and operators have a legal responsibility to ensure the safety of people in the water and boats around them. When they fail in this duty of care, they can be held liable for ensuing injuries, loss of property, and even loss of life.

In a jet ski accident, the parties that can be held liable include a jet ski owner for not carrying out timely maintenance, entrusting the jet ski to an untrained or unqualified person, or recklessly operating the jet ski; the jet ski operator for being reckless and showing scant regard for the safety of others and the Louisiana laws and boating regulations; the manufacturer of the jet ski for manufacturing defects or design flaws; the rental company for leasing out the jet ski to someone not qualified or trained; and event hosts for organizing events on the water that involve jet skis or boats. 

Before filing a lawsuit, you will need to know your legal options. If an insurance policy covers the accident, you can seek an insurance settlement first.

Bart Bernard Injury Lawyers: Louisiana Lawyers Who Deliver Results Regardless of Insurance

Louisiana does not require boat liability insurance.

Pursuing compensation after a jet ski accident is often complicated. If there is no insurance coverage, you will have limited options. But all is not lost.

A boating accident attorney at Bart Bernard Injury Lawyers can examine your case and help you decide your future action. 

If the other party makes loan payments on their boat, they might have to carry coverage. Most lenders in Louisiana will require collision and comprehensive coverage if you finance your watercraft. Collision coverage protects your watercraft from accidents involving other boaters and objects such as buoys and docks. Comprehensive coverage covers the cost to replace or repair your jet ski for events outside of your control, such as fire, theft, and vandalism. 

If you are an avid water sports enthusiast, having a Watersports coverage will help pay for medical costs from accidents in on-the-water sports such as water-tubing, jet skiing, and water-skiing. 

If the other party does not have insurance, you won’t be able to file an insurance claim.  

You might need to file a personal injury lawsuit against the boat owner for compensation if you have suffered severe damages. What you can recover will depend on the defendant’s assets. They cannot pay you the money they don’t have. 

Even if another driver causes your injuries, you may still sue their rental company for putting a dangerous driver on one of their jet skis. 

If a manufacturing defect led to the accident, you can file a product liability claim against a boat manufacturer. 

If a boat rental company fails to perform scheduled maintenance or knowingly rents a boat with safety issues, your lawyer can go after it for compensation. 

If you or a loved one suffered injuries in a jet ski accident anywhere in Louisiana because of someone else’s negligence, contact a knowledgeable lawyer at our Louisiana personal injury law firm to discuss your legal rights.  A jet ski accident can be a devastating experience. With the right Louisiana personal injury lawyer, however, you can be on your way to recovery in no time. Contact a jet ski accident lawyer at Bart Bernard Injury Lawyers to schedule a free case review immediately.

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