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Jonathan Rosenfeld

March 2, 2023

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Around 5,000 water skiing accidents occur in the United States every year. If you are injured while water skiing, it is essential to know your legal rights.

Our water ski accident lawyer can help you get the compensation you deserve. At our law firm, we have combined experience of many years helping victims of water skiing accidents.

We understand what you are going through and will work hard to get you the best possible outcome in your case. Contact our boating accident lawyers toll-free today at (888) 424-5757 for a free consultation to access our legal services and determine your legal options.

Water Ski Accident Lawyer

Serious Injury Resulting From a Jet Ski Accident

Individuals on water skis and jet skis are significantly more vulnerable to experiencing an injury or a jet ski accident than other water activities, including boating.

Water skiers are often injured by recreational jet skis equipment, boat hardware, obstacles, colliding with other boats, fixed objects, or other causes.

Jet ski crashes often produce significant life-threatening problems to the victim, similar to a car accident that includes:

Boat and Jet Ski Accidents Occurring on Illinois Boats and Rivers

The state of Illinois, specifically the Chicago area, is an ideal place to participate in recreational activities. The national and state parks, Lake Michigan, inland lakes, beaches, rivers, and islands around the state make the area the perfect location for outdoor fun.

Most individuals that enjoy many water sports activities, including skiing, tubing, wakeboarding, swimming, and other outdoor water activities, seldom expect to experience a boating accident. However, when personal watercraft crashes occur, it often brings life-threatening bodily harm and sometimes death.

Waterskiing Accident Lawyers

Boating Accidents Caused by the Gross Negligence of Boaters & Other Vessels on the Water

According to the U.S. Coast Guard, boat operators, through their gross negligence or fault, create the potential of a collision involving a water skier. In fact, by Illinois state law, the boater has responsibility. It is legally bound to provide reasonable care to everyone in the water and passengers along with other boats out on the water.

When failing to follow standardized vessel safety rules, anyone in or around the vessel has an increased potential of experiencing bodily harm or a fatality. In some incidences, the boater can be held criminally and civilly responsible due to negligence or fault.

Boating Under Influence (BUI)

The boater can be reckless when piloting the watercraft while pulling a water skier by speeding, weaving, “buzzing,” or ignoring a “no wake” zone. Also, vessel operators can be legally responsible for a water skiing accident when breaking BUI (boating under the influence) laws for operating a vehicle with a blood-alcohol content (BAC) level of 0.08 percent or higher.

In addition to reckless behavior or a BUI, vessel operators can also be held legally responsible when distracted while piloting the vessel. Often, they travel too close to other swimmers or watercraft or steer the motorboat towards others in the boat’s approaching path or cross-wakes, which can cause significant bodily harm to the skier.

Causes of Boat Crashes

Boat operators can also steer the vessel where obstacles become placed between the vessel and the skier. A vessel passenger must serve as an observer and watch the skier every moment in the water to avoid risk.

Boaters are responsible for shutting off the propeller entirely and allowing the skier to approach the vessel and avoid bodily harm and death.

Additionally, equipment failure, including missing life jackets, broken towlines, and malfunctioning sporting equipment, may cause significant bodily harm and death.

The fault, risk, and circumstances in which the crash occurred will affect the outcome of your settlement case.

If you were involved in a water skiing accident, you might have suffered serious injuries. The bodily harm can have a lasting impact on your life, and you may be entitled to compensation.

Waterskiing Accident Attorney

Manufacturing Defects Resulting in Harm & Fatalities Involving Water Enthusiasts

Many cases handled by water-skiing accident attorneys involve the manufacturer’s negligence or the marketer of skiing equipment. There is often a design defect or improper process when manufacturing skiing gear.

Other times, the equipment is marketed improperly or without proper instructions for use. Skilled attorneys have proved that third-party manufacturers and retailers were negligent in designing, manufacturing, and selling the skiing equipment, which caused severe and catastrophic bodily harm.

Were you involved in a water skiing accident? If so, speaking with a water skiing accident lawyer may be in your best interest.

Risk on the Water: Common Boating Accident Injuries Involve Skiers & Tubers

Boating accident victims suffer common severe injuries. Bodily harm could include:

  • Brain and head trauma
  • Broken bones
  • Severed extremities by the boat propeller
  • Concussions and contusions
  • Coma
  • Facial disfigurement

Whenever a water-related recreational activity leads to a serious crash causing bodily harm or fatalities, a personal injury attorney can file a personal injury claim or wrongful death action on behalf of the client.

Skilled personal injury attorneys can obtain the financial compensation required to rebuild lives, pay off medical expenses, recoup lost wages, and cover pain, suffering, emotional distress, and other challenges resulting from the accident.

In an emergency, medical personnel responding to the crash site will assess the victim’s bodily harm and provide treatment as necessary. Most liability for water skiing accidents lies with the operator of the vessel, not the skier.

The dock may be the most accident-prone area around the water. Slippery surfaces, fast-moving vessels, and flying water skiing equipment create potential hazards for water skiers of all levels.

The shore may look like a safe place to stand when you are skiing, but there are many hidden dangers lurking just beneath the surface, from rocks and submerged logs to strong currents and undertows.

Waterskiing Accident Attorneys

Water Skiing Accident Injury FAQs

Our personal injury law firm has years of experience filing and resolving a compensation cases against another boat operator or someone whose negligence led to bodily harm. Our legal team has answered some of those questions about boating accidents below.

Contact our law office today at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone call) or fill in the contact form for more answers about our legal services.

What Is the Most Common Skiing Injury?

Statistics reveal that knee sprains are among the most common waterskiing accident injuries when the knee is stretched too far, causing torn ligaments and tendons. Skiers can also suffer significant knee bodily harm when the joint is thrust in the opposite direction, leading to extensive hospitalization and medical bills.

Skiing is an inherently risky activity. Many waterskiing crashes lead to severe bodily harm, including fractured wrists, cranial injuries (traumatic brain injuries), broken legs, shoulder dislocation, spinal cord injuries, and foot and ankle sprains.

How Fast Do You Need to Go to Waterski?

According to the US Coast Guard [2], most skiers travel approximately 25 mph or more. However, proficient waterskiing requires more than being pulled behind a towboat at the correct speed or wearing the best skiing gear.

Knowing how to swim while wearing a life vest or jacket is essential to avoid being injured. Safe waterskiing requires participating in the sport during calm waters in uncongested areas away from the shore, swimming areas, and docks.

Which Is Harder Water-Skiing or Wakeboarding?

Compared to wakeboarding, skiing is significantly less complicated and is like using snow skiing gear. Both sports require being towed by a water vessel and following the same rules to avoid being injured.

However, wakeboarders are usually polled at approximately 19 to 22 miles an hour, whereas skiers are pulled at between 26 and 34 mph. The vessel usually pulls the individual on skis facing forward. Alternatively, a wakeboarder moves sideways like riding on a surfboard.

Wearing a helmet while on a wakeboard at incredible speeds is crucial to stay safe. Wakeboarding is inherently dangerous, and crashing can cause bodily harm like a severe car accident, leaving the victim with head trauma and broken bones.

Should You Wear a Helmet Water Skiing?

Wear an approved helmet while skiing to avoid crashes to ensure maximum safety. Also, ensure that a “spotter” is sitting in a safe manner on the back of the vessel, watching the skier at a distance close enough to talk to the ski boat operator.

Avoid bodily harm by letting go of the total rope when necessary to avoid a hard fall into the water that might cause harm. Skiing is an inherently dangerous activity; therefore, never water-ski while impaired by alcohol or drugs to ensure everyone’s safety.

Is Water Skiing Safe?

According to the National Safety Council [3], most injuries involving boating accidents could have been prevented had the ski boat operator, skier, or other person followed boating rules.

Many individuals suffer severe head and neck lacerations, traumatic brain injuries, concussions, broken bones, and fractured ribs when encountering the water, buoys, tow handles, water skis, and stationary jumps, much like thebodily harm in a car accident.

It is crucial to learn hand signals to communicate with the spotter or boat operator to prevent crashes. Inspect your gear, including the handles, skis, and ropes, especially at the beginning of the season after the equipment has been in storage for several months

Watching out for other boaters is crucial for those who might not understand boating rules and regulations, lack experience, or are impaired by alcohol or drugs. Waterskiing is best done with an experienced team of people who understand how to operate in a safe manner on the water.

What Steps Keep Me the Safest When Water Skiing?

While it is fun to learn new tricks, understanding the best basic safety techniques could minimize the potential of being injured or severely injured when skiing. Learn how to remain better balanced when riding on the water’s surface and know your limits at every speed to avoid collisions.

Start slowly to avoid being injured at the beginning of your skiing session, use hand signals, and take tear skis only during the best weather conditions while wearing a life jacket or vest.

Hire a Water Ski Accident Lawyer – Receive Compensation for Your Injuries

Were you injured, or did you or a loved one experience serious bodily harm resulting from a water-skiing, tubing, or wakeboarding accident? Was a loved one the victim of wrongful water-related death?

Hire the skills of an experienced lawyer from the law firm of Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC. Our personal injury accident attorneys specialize in boating and water collisions involving bodily harm.

Contact our law firm today at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone call) or through the contact form to schedule a free, confidential consultation to access our legal services and determine your legal options. All discussions with our boating accident lawyers remain confidential through an attorney-client relationship.

Our Chicago, Illinois, personal injury attorneys represent clients’ cases in numerous practice areas, including medical malpractice, nursing home abuse, car accident trauma, waterskiing injuries, product liability, slip & fall cases, and wrongful death.

Resources: [1] Mayo Clinic, [2] US Coast Guard, [3] National Safety Council

Client Reviews

Jonathan Rosenfeld was professionally objective, timely, and knowledgeable. Also, his advice was extremely effective regarding my case. In addition, Jonathan was understanding and patient pertaining to any of my questions or concerns. I was very happy with the end result and I highly recommend Jonathan Rosenfeld.

- Michonne Proulx

Extremely impressed with this law firm. They took control of a bad motorcycle crash that left my uncle seriously injured. Without any guarantee of a financial recovery, they went out and hired accident investigators and engineers to help prove how the accident happened. I am grateful that they worked on a contingency fee basis as there was no way we could have paid for these services on our own.

- Ethan Armstrong

Jonathan helped my family heal and get compensation after our child was suffered a life threatening injury at daycare. He was sympathetic and in constant contact with us letting us know all he knew every step of the way. We were so blessed to find Jonathan!

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This lawyer really helped me get compensation for my motorcycle accident case. I know there is no way that I could have gotten anywhere near the amount that Mr. Rosenfeld was able to get to settle my case. Thank you.

- Daniel Kaim

Jonathan did a great job helping my family navigate through a lengthy lawsuit involving my grandmother's death in a nursing home. Through every step of the case, Jonathan kept my family informed of the progression of the case. Although our case eventually settled at a mediation, I really was impressed at how well prepared Jonathan was to take the case to trial.

- Lisa
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