California’s Premier Litigation Law Attorneys

Orange County Boating Accident Lawyer

A Brief Summary of the Following Page

  • Accident Variety: A range of boating incidents, including collisions, capsizing, propeller injuries, personal watercraft mishaps, and boating under the influence, reflect the potential hazards on water.
  • Negligence Proof: Proving negligence in boating accidents necessitates establishing a duty of care, demonstrating its breach, showing direct causation of the injury by the breach, and verifying tangible damages.
  • Evidence Importance: Gathering comprehensive evidence is crucial for substantiating claims of negligence. This may include eyewitness and expert testimonies, photos/videos, weather reports, and official documents.
  • Legal Expertise: For those impacted by boating accidents due to negligence, seeking counsel from specialized attorneys can guide them through the complexities of proving fault and pursuing compensation.
  • Contact our skilled trial lawyers today to discuss your case at (714) 241-4444 or fill out a contact form.

Residents of Orange County go out on the water to enjoy the sunshine, spend time with loved ones, and get away from day-to-day stresses. However, boating accidents can lead to complex and distressing situations for all involved, especially when they result in serious injuries or fatalities caused by negligence. The lawyers of Callahan & Blaine understand the nuanced maritime laws and regulations, how to prove liability, and how to negotiate with insurance adjusters to ensure victims and their families can focus on healing after an accident.  

Victims of boating accidents may pursue compensation for various damages, including medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more. Our legal team will evaluate the details of the case and advocate on your behalf to ensure you recover the compensation you deserve.  

Types of Boating Accidents We Handle in Orange County 

The diverse range of boating activities in Orange County brings a variety of potential hazards. The following are some of the most frequent types of boating accidents we handle at Callahan & Blaine:

Collisions With Other Vessels

One of the most common types of boating accidents involves two or more vessels colliding. These collisions can be due to various factors, including but not limited to operator inattention, inexperience, speeding, and failure to yield right of way. The impact can cause significant damage to the vessels and serious injuries to the occupants.

Collisions With Fixed Objects

Boats striking fixed objects, such as docks, buoys, or underwater hazards, represent another common accident type. These incidents can occur due to navigational errors, low visibility, or operator inexperience. Collisions with fixed objects can result in damage to the boat and injuries to passengers and crew.

Capsizing and Falls Overboard

Capsizing refers to a boat overturning in the water, while falls overboard involve individuals accidentally falling from the boat into the water. Both situations can lead to drowning, hypothermia, or other serious injuries, especially if safety measures like life jackets are not utilized.

Propeller Accidents

Accidents involving boat propellers can cause severe injuries, including lacerations, amputations, and fatalities. These incidents often occur during water sports activities or when individuals are swimming near a boat without proper caution.

Personal Watercraft Accidents

PWCs, such as jet skis, are popular in Orange County but can be involved in unique accidents due to their high speeds and maneuverability. Collisions, loss of control, and ejection from the craft are common PWC accident scenarios.

Boating Under the Influence

Operating a boat while under the influence of alcohol or drugs is not only illegal but also a significant cause of boating accidents. BUI can impair judgment, reaction times, and operational abilities, leading to various types of accidents and injuries.


Grounding occurs when a boat runs ashore or hits the bottom in shallow waters. Depending on the area of the grounding, this type of accident can damage the vessel’s hull and potentially lead to environmental hazards.

If a boating accident was caused by someone else’s negligence, speak with the lawyers at Callahan & Blaine for an evaluation of your case. We will help you understand how to best proceed, whether it is pursuing compensation through the liable party’s insurance company or filing a lawsuit. 

Proving Fault in a Boating Accident Claim 

Proving negligence in a boating accident claim is crucial for recovering damages for injuries and losses sustained in the incident. Negligence requires demonstrating that the party at fault failed to act with the degree of care a reasonably prudent person would have exhibited under similar circumstances. 

The following are the key steps involved in proving negligence in a boating accident claim:

Establishing Duty of Care

Initially, your lawyer must prove that the opposing party owed a duty of care to the victim. In the context of boating, this could mean the operator of a vessel has a duty to navigate the boat safely and responsibly, adhering to maritime laws and regulations to prevent harm to passengers, other boaters, and swimmers.

Breach of Duty

After a duty of care is established, your lawyer must show that the opposing party breached this duty. This involves proving that the liable party failed to act as a reasonably prudent vessel operator or boater would under similar circumstances. Examples of breach of duty include operating the boat while intoxicated, speeding, not paying attention to the surroundings, or failing to provide adequate safety equipment.


When a breach of duty is proven, it must be demonstrated that this breach directly caused the accident and the victim’s injuries. This means showing a direct link between the defendant’s actions (or lack thereof) and the incident, proving that the accident would not have occurred if the defendant had acted responsibly.


Finally, your lawyer must prove you suffered tangible damages due to the accident, which include medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering, and others. Providing medical records, receipts, employment documentation, and personal testimony can help substantiate these claims.

To effectively prove negligence in a boating accident claim, it is essential to gather and present compelling evidence, such as eyewitness testimonies, expert testimonies (e.g., from boating safety experts or medical professionals), photo or video evidence of the accident, and records of weather conditions at the time of the incident. Additionally, documentation showing the defendant’s boating license status, alcohol or drug test results, and maintenance records for the vessel can further strengthen the case.

Speak With the Boating Accident Lawyers at Callahan & Blaine Today 

If you were involved in a boating accident in Orange County, it is crucial to understand your legal rights and the steps necessary to seek compensation for your injuries and losses. Partnering with experienced personal injury lawyers at Callahan & Blaine can significantly enhance your chances of securing the compensation you deserve. We have a long history of recovering multi-million dollar settlements and verdicts for accident victims, including the biggest jury verdict in Orange County history. 

Contact our skilled trial lawyers today to discuss your case at (714) 241-4444 or fill out a contact form