It is important to understand the truth—and not the myths—about what causes fatal boat accident on Lake Barkley, the Ohio River, and other Kentucky waterways. If we understand the truth then we may be able to prevent future accidents and we may be able to save lives. Part of understanding the truth is disproving myths so that boat operators and passengers can make educated decisions about their safety.

The Truth About Age, Experience, and Passengers Might Surprise You

You might think that a middle aged person with hours of experience and just a few passengers may be a safe boat operator. You might think that a person who is old enough to have some experience, but not old enough to deal with the negative effects of aging, is safe. You might believe that more than 100-hours of experience is enough to safely deal with the dangers of boating. You may anticipate that fewer passengers lessens the distractions to the boat operator.

While these beliefs may be true, you need to know the facts. According to the United States Coast Guard:

  • Operators between the ages of 36 and 55 were involved in the highest number of fatal accidents. In 2013, 214 people died on vessels driven by boat operators between these ages.
  • Operators with 101 – 500 hours of experience were involved in the highest number of fatal accidents. In 2013, 133 people died on vessels driven by boat operators with 101 – 500 hours of experience.
  • Operators who had only one passenger were involved in the highest number of fatal accidents. In 2013, 220 people died in boat accidents where there was just one passenger on board.

It may be that the fatalities were higher in these categories because there were more boat operators in this age group, with this level of experience, and with just one passenger than there were other operators. However, these statistics may also be surprising.

The Truth About Your Own Recovery Should Be No Surprise

If you have lost a loved one in a fatal boat accident then you need some certainty now. You need to know what to do, you need to know who to trust, and you need to know how to get help. Please read our free boat accident articles and start an online chat with us know to learn more about your rights and your potential recovery.

Mark K. Gray
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Louisville attorney serving the seriously injured in Kentucky

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