Product Liability in Boat Accidents

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How a Reston, VA product defect lawyer can help you

Reston VA product defect lawyerYou may be surprised to learn that a Reston, VA product defect lawyer can help in boating accident cases. Typically, in most boat accidents, the crash occurs because of negligence or recklessness on the part of a boat operator. In these cases, injured victims will pursue a lawsuit against the operator and/or owner of the vessel. However, there are accidents, which are actually caused because of a defective part on the vessel.

What are the most common types of defects that cause boating accidents?

Some of the most common boat product defects not only create an increased risk of a boat accident – and possible injury – they may also create a violation of federal boating safety regulations. A skilled product defect lawyer in Reston, VA will tell you that the most common of these defects include:

  • Defect that causes unintended acceleration
  • Defects that cause fuel to leak
  • Defects that cause loss of steering control
  • Electrical system that contains defects
  • Navigational equipment that is defective
  • Radar system defects
  • Throttle system that is defective

How can a boat accident attorney prove product liability?

In order to prove that a product defect caused a boat accident that resulted in a victim’s injury, a boat accident attorney must prove the following:

  • The boat was sold during an ordinary course of business transaction.
  • The boat contained the defective item when it was sold. This created an unsafe and unreasonable product when it will be used in a reasonable manner.
  • The boat – with the defective item or condition – was used in a reasonable manner for which it was meant for (A product defect lawyer from Reston, VA will emphasize this point)
  • The buyer or someone else was injured after using the boat that contained the defective item or condition which existed when the boat was sold.

Who is liable?

No matter who is liable, your attorney must prove the above factors to the jury in a boat accident product liability claim. Who that liable party is depends on what the defect is.

A design defect occurs during the planning or design stage of the vessel. One example of a design defect is a boat that contains a propeller that cannot power the vessel or a vessel that cannot stay afloat.

A manufacturing defect occurs as the boat and/or its parts are being built. A common example of a manufacturing defect a product defect lawyer from Reston, VA may see a lot is when a boat that contains a hole in the bottom of the boat that allows water to come into the boat. This would be a defect that the manufacturer would be responsible for.

Another product liability lawsuit could involve a failure to warn or failure to provide adequate instructions. An example of this type of liability would be if a manufacturer failed to warn consumers of the possible corrosion of a steering component.

Who oversees recalls on defective boat parts?

If there is a defect or other issue with defective design, manufacturing, or failure to warn, the federal agency who oversees the issues and recalls is the United States Coast Guard (USCG). Consumers can find information and warnings regarding alerts, safety advisories, and recalls on the USCG website. The agency also has a page on their website specifically for defect notification where consumers can actually post information about a potential or suspected defect.

If you or someone you know has suffered an injury from a product defect, do not hesitate to contact Cohen & Cohen and we will be more than happy to set you up with a Reston, VA product defect lawyer on our team.

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