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California Water Dangers and the Fourth of July

December 31, 1969

The California Department of Boating and Waterways (DBW) reminds boaters to use caution on the water this Fourth of July. DBW's boating accident data shows that more boating accidents occur during this holiday than any others during the summer boating season.
"The need for boaters to become familiar with the rules of the road is critical in ensuring a safe boating experience," said Lucia Becerra, DBW's Acting Director.

Our Los Angeles accident lawyers understand that the Fourth is to boating as American is to apple pie. Unfortunately, boating safety is too often lacking. It's important that boaters learn the rules of the water before heading out this year. Inexperience is one of the leading cause of boating accidents across the nation. According to the Coast Guard, hundreds of people are involved in boating accidents each year in the U.S. Most of these accidents do not involve fatalities or even injury, but many do.

In 2012, there were close to 500 boating accidents in the state of California, injuring more than 20,000 and leading to more than 50 fatalities. Most of these accidents happened on the Northern Lake, but they're subject to all bodies of water.

When looking at the property damage that these accidents cost, you'll see that 2012 accidents rang up a bill of more than $5,790,000.

Like we said before, July is the most dangerous month of the entire year for boating accidents in California. In 2012, there were 100 boating accidents observed during this month. The next most dangerous month for these incidents was the month of June, with a mere 73 accidents recorded.

When heading out on the water during the Fourth of July weekend, make sure you do what you can to help to keep you and your crew safe. Accidents happen too fast on the water to reach for stowed life jackets. Most boating fatalities are drownings - and 84 percent of those who drown aren't wearing a life jacket. You should also review the following safety tips and share them with your fellow boaters:

-Make sure all young children are wearing the proper life jacket at all times. Make sure a life jacket is available for everyone on board.

-Avoid drinking while boating. Alcohol use is a major contributing factor in fatal boating accidents; it was listed as the leading factor in more than 15 percent of boating fatalities.

-Know California's safe boating laws before heading out. You can find them here.

-Make sure that your boat is safe and ready to go. Officials with the US Coast Guard Auxiliary even offer free vessel safety checks and classes. Sign up for one today!

-Always take a look at weather reports before heading out. If you see clouds rolling it, make sure you roll out.

Contact Howard Law, PC today, if you or a loved one has been injured in a boating accident. Call today for a free and confidential consultation to discuss your case. 1-800-872-5925.

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