According to a recent report from WNCN, a man was killed in a boating accident in Lake Norman, North Carolina. Officials investigating the accident say victim was on his own boat, along with two passengers, during the fatal boating accident.
The accident occurred around two in the morning, when the man was navigating the boat through a cove and accidentally crashed into a dock. Wildlife officers believe he was operating the boat at high speed, despite his close proximity to the dock. After hitting the dock, officers believe he was thrown from the boat into the water. It appears he was not aware of the dock, because it was dark, and he believed he was in a different position than his actual location at the time of the accident.
Authorities say there were two other men on the boat along with deceased operator. These passengers were said to be hurt in the accident but were not seriously injured. As our Asheville personal injury attorneys can explain, it is not uncommon for people to be seriously injured or killed in vehicles of all kinds operated by friends.
In the case of a car accident, the driver likely has liability insurance, which can be used to pay for some or all of the damages caused by operator’s alleged negligence. In the case of a boat or all-terrain vehicle (ATV or four-wheeler), it is possible there is no insurance policy in place with respect to the vehicle.
It often depends on whether the owner had a loan from a bank or finance company on the vehicle. If he or she still owed money on the vehicle or vessel, it is likely the loan holder required borrower to maintain comprehensive insurance on the vehicle in the case of an accident, theft, or other catastrophic loss, since the vehicle is essentially their collateral on the loan. If the vehicle was destroyed, and there was no insurance coverage, the loan holder would have no ability to reclaim their money should owner default on his or her obligation to pay, absent filing a breach of contract lawsuit, which might cost them more than borrower owes on the outstanding balance of the loan.
However, even without insurance directly on the vehicle, it might be possible there is a homeowner’s policy or renter’s insurance policy that covers any liability due to owner’s negligence. It is also true if a boat is required to be registered by the state, there may be a requirement for insurance on the boat, but this is not always the case if the boat was not registered in the state in which the accident occurred.
The point of finding out if there is any source of insurance to pay for personal injury is that it may be necessary to file a claim or even lawsuit against a friend who caused the injury; however, it is much easier if there is an insurance company to negotiate with to keep your friend’s personal involvement and consequences to a minimum.
Contact the Carolina injury lawyers at the Lee Law Offices by calling 800-887-1965.
Man killed when boat hits dock on Lake Norman, April 30, 2015, WCNC
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