Attorneys in Guilford County, North Carolina have filed a lawsuit on behalf of a man who lost his three year-old child, his pregnant wife and her brother in a boating accident on High Rock Lake over this past Memorial Day.
Though this is not a case that my firm is handling, it is definitely an important lawsuit worth mentioning. The law firm filed the suit in July on behalf of the deceased. Three people died during the accident that occurred on May 25 at 12:30 PM.
The fatal boating wreck involved two boats, one which was a power boat, and the other was a pontoon boat. The victims were on the pontoon. The powerboat was operated by Michael Greene, which slammed into the pontoon boat head on.
The accident happened as the boats were going down Swearing Creek on High Rock Lake. The pontoon was going slowly downstream, and the power boat was going up stream at over 25 MPH before the crash. Attorneys for the plaintiffs maintain that Greene was not paying any attention as he was driving and saw the pontoon too late to avoid it. Further, the suit claims that Greene was operating his vessel on a public lake without due caution and at a speed that was likely to endanger others.
Greene also has been indicted in North Carolina on three counts of involuntary manslaughter.
Boating accidents are common events in many states, and especially the waterways contiguous to my area here in Virginia Beach and Northeastern North Carolina. In the Hampton Roads region, there are many recreational boat operators that do not have much training, and many people go out on the water on the weekends in the summer. Many boat operators are not familiar with the Coast Guard rules and regulations that govern recreational boating. Also, a boating accident does not typically allow for the police to respond as quickly as in a car accident, which can lead to more serious injuries and deaths.
Boating accidents, whether they result from a charter fishing trip out of the Oregon Inlet, or simply a pleasure cruise on Broad Bay can result in the physical trauma associated with any impact, as well as the added risk of drowning. It is for these reasons that it is imperative that boaters use caution, observe the channel markings in their waterways, don’t let inexperienced drivers take the controls, and make sure their vessels are equipped with all of the necessary safety instrumentation that the Coast Guard requires. Hopefully the family in the article above has a successful result in their lawsuit.