Folsom Lake, Lake Berryessa, Rollins Lake – Sacramento is surrounded by scenic aquatic venues that provide the opportunity for jet skiing. While spending an afternoon on a jet ski is most often nothing more than a fun and exciting recreational pursuit, accidents occur with alarming frequency and can result in surprisingly serious injuries or even death. Common contributors to jet ski accidents include alcohol use, speed and inattention. Perhaps the factor most responsible for such accidents is inexperienced operators or boaters.
Inexperienced jet skiiers – do NOT try these tricks!
The rules for operation of a Jet Ski (also known as a personal water craft -PWC) are largely similar to those for boat operation. Regulations can be found here and include:
- Every rider or passenger onboard a PWC must wear a regulation life jacket.
- The operator must attach the PWC’s lanyard cut-off switch (if the PWC has one) to his or her person.
- Jet skis may not be operated between sunset and sunrise.
- The operator of a one-person PWC must be at least 16 years old. A person 12-15 years old can operate a jet ski designed to carry more than one person if the operator is supervised on board by a person 18 years of age or older.
Accidents involving PWC’s can cause significant injuries, as they can travel at high speeds and offer riders no external protection. Often a rider is thrown from the PWC if it impacts another vehicle, boat or stationary object. The ejection can cause severe injuries or death. If you are injured by a negligent jet-ski operator, or you were a jet ski rider injured by another’s negligence, you may have a claim for monetary damages against the negligent party.
I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento personal injury attorney with the primary accident information site on the web, AutoAccident.com.
If you or someone you love has been injured in a jet ski or boating accident, call me at (916) 921-6400. If you are outside the Sacramento area, you can call us at (800) 404-5400 for free, friendly advice.