Earlier this month, a Butte County Superior Court jury returned a $30.9 million verdict against a boat driver and a boat manufacturer in a Lake Oroville boat accident. The accident occurred while a group was on the 24-foot-long wakeboarding boat. During a wakeboarding run, many passengers were sitting in the front of the boat. When the driver turned the boat around to recover the wakeboarder, water came into the boat. Two female passengers were swept off the craft and struck by the propeller.
According to news reports, the jury determined that the boat’s design defects played a substantial factor in the accident and that MasterCraft should have reasonably foreseen how the X-45 was going to be used. As a result, the jury determined that the boat manufacture was 80% at fault for the accident, and the driver was 20% at fault.
If you have been injured in a boating accident or other recreational vehicle accident, it is important to speak to a knowledgeable Sacramento boat accident attorney to investigate all the circumstances surrounding the case and determine your next steps.
Although here the jury determined the driver was partly to blame, the jury was swayed by arguments that the design errors such as ladder holes in the hull, the hull design and the failure to perform adequate testing on the design of the boat were more significant contributions to the accident.
Often the cause of an accident is not straightforward but requires in-depth investigation into all the factors that may have contributed to a serious personal injury.
For more information, or if you have been injured in a boating or other accident, please contact the dedicated Sacramento personal injury lawyer at Sette Law Office.