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Leading Causes of Slip and Fall Accidents on a Boat or Dock


A group of people on a boat in turbulent waters.

Boating can be fun and a great way to enjoy the weather throughout the year. However, boats and docks can be dangerous, and you can suffer serious injuries if you experience a slip and fall accident.

Boats and Docks Are Prime Locations for Slip and Fall Accidents

Boats, docks, and marinas are all locations where slip and fall accidents are more likely to happen. While these accidents can happen almost anywhere at any time, certain circumstances make boats and docks more dangerous and prone to creating the environment for a slip and fall to happen.

When you are on a boat or a dock, not only are you at risk of falling and hitting the ground but — depending on the location of your slip and fall accident — you may also land in the water. Serious injuries are likely after experiencing a slip and fall accident in this environment.

Even though you try to be as careful as possible, sometimes being careful is not enough to dodge a risky situation.

Causes of Slip and Falls on Boats and Docks

Slip and fall accidents on boats and docks can happen for many reasons, but the following are some of the most common causes.

Slippery Surfaces

Slipping and falling on a slippery surface is one of the main causes of accidents on boats and docks. Because you’re surrounded by water, every surface is likely to get wet at some point.

While in most locations, wet surfaces are indicated with danger signs, you’re unlikely to find warning signs in boat-related locations like marinas. This is especially true on boats themselves — a boat floor can be wet and slippery and you may not be aware.

Ropes, Nets, and Other Items

Along boat docks, you’ll always find items lying around — ropes to tie the boats down, nets for fishing, buckets, boxes, and many other obstacles. If you’re walking and don’t see these items, it’s easy to trip and fall and suffer extensive injuries.

Poorly Maintained Docks

Docks require regular maintenance, especially if they are high-traffic. When a dock isn’t properly maintained, you’re likely to encounter uneven wooden planks or holes and breaks within the dock.

Inadequate Lighting

Lighting is critical, especially as the sun goes down. If you’re boating at night, your boat should have proper lighting not only to navigate your path but also to see where you’re walking within the boat.

On a dock, you need adequate lighting to see exactly where you’re going, especially since docks can be particularly dark.

Lack of Barriers and Rails

Barriers and guardrails are necessary, specifically when a dock is narrow and difficult to walk on. Rails are also important when getting in and out of boats, as the movement of the boat itself can make it difficult to get your footing.

Injuries Often Result from Slip and Fall Accidents

Slip and falls can result in serious and sometimes even life-altering injuries. The type of injury typically depends on the specifics of your accident, like the location of your fall and how you land.

Some common injuries you may suffer in a slip and fall accident include:

  • Sprains and strains
  • Cuts and lacerations
  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Torn ligaments
  • Fractured or broken bones
  • Soft tissue injuries
  • Spinal cord injuries

Additionally, a slip and fall accident in a location surrounded by water can lead to a near-drowning experience.

Depending on the severity of your injuries, you could also suffer from life-changing consequences, including paralysis, scarring, or chronic pain.

Damages for Slip and Falls

Damages can compensate you for the harm and related losses you suffer after a slip and fall accident. Your compensation depends on the total monetary value of your injuries and losses and the details of your accident.

Some of the damages you may be entitled to receive include:

  • Past and future medical expenses
  • Lost earnings
  • Diminished or lost earning capacity
  • Emotional distress
  • Scarring and disfigurement
  • Permanent disability

Your slip and fall attorney can examine several factors to determine how much your case is worth. Having a solid understanding of the value of your case can greatly help ensure you obtain full and fair compensation.

Consult with an Attorney After Your Slip and Fall Accident

A slip and fall accident can hurt you physically and mentally while also affecting you financially. Therefore, if you suffer a slip and fall accident on a boat or dock, do not hesitate to consult with a personal injury lawyer at Schrier Law Group. Contact us today to schedule your consultation.

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Schrier Law Group is rated 5 out of 5.0 stars based on 22 review(s).


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