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The Importance of Filing a Timely Boating Accident Report in Missouri

If you are ever involved in an accident on Missouri’s waterways, The Handbook of Missouri Boating Laws and Responsibilities provides you with an accident checklist of steps to respond to the emergency and report the incident. Your first responsibility is to stop and to remain at the scene. Your second responsibility is to take the reasonable steps to render aid and assistance to the operator and passengers of the other vessel without endangering your passengers. As a licensed operator of a ship, boat, Jet Ski, water ski or another recreational vessel, it is your duty to inform the Missouri State Water Patrol (MSWP) of the accident immediately.

You must also file a separate report with the Missouri State Highway Patrol (MSHP) within 48 hours if the collision results in:

  • An accidental death
  • Drowning
  • Disappearance of a person
  • Serious injury
  • Disability or property damage valued in excess of $500

You have five days to report the accident otherwise. Once you take these preliminary steps, a Missouri maritime claim attorney can assist you with obtaining compensation for damages sustained during a marina slip and fall accident, a recreational vehicle wreck or another related waterway incident. If the accident can be traced back to negligence or wrongdoing on the part of the owner-operator of the other vessel or the owner-operator of the marina or dock, it may be possible for you to obtain compensation for your injuries.

Filing a maritime claim in St. Louis courts is rarely as straightforward as it may seem.  Failure to report your accident in a timely manner may prevent you from obtaining compensation for your injuries. Knowledge of state and federal regulations is essential to the filing of your claim, particularly if you are employed as a sailor, a motorboat operator or in another related capacity.   It is essential to work with an experienced maritime and admiralty attorney who knows the ins and outs of the Jones Act, the Longshoreman and Harbor Workers Compensation Act and other related maritime law.

For more information about waterway accidents, contact a personal injury and property damage lawyer at the Guirl Law Firm, LLC.

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