Police Suspect Alcohol Played Role in Weekend, High-Speed Boating Accident That Killed One, Injured Nine

By Peter DePaolis

Emergency responders described a boating accident in Northern Virginia a few weekends ago as one of the worst they have ever seen. The crash scene included shattered glass and fiberglass, severely injured people treading water holding onto steel marker beams to keep from floating away, and beer cans strewn about. One person died in the crash, a woman who was the sole person not wearing a life jacket on the boat. A Northern Virginia personal injury lawyer can help your family obtain compensation for injuries suffered in a boating or other transportation accident.

Investigators determined that the boat’s occupants had eaten dinner earlier in the evening and consumed little alcohol at the restaurant. When responders arrived on the crash scene, however, they found beer cans throughout the boat and in the water, leading them to believe that alcohol played a role in the crash. Authorities said that a 12-foot high tripod of steel beams that serves as a fixed channel marker decimated the boat, which was likely traveling at 35 miles per hour at impact.

The fatal boating accident was the second one in Virginia in the past several weeks. Drivers should never operate a boat, car, or any vehicle, while under the influence of alcohol. Additionally, authorities stated that the boat was traveling too fast under any conditions, but, in particular, during the dark of night, as the accident just before 10 p.m. Boat occupants should always wear a life jacket, and there should always be one person serving as a lookout in addition to the driver.

If you or a loved one has been hurt in a transportation accident, contact Julie H. Heiden, a Northern Virginia personal injury attorney, at Koonz, McKenney, Johnson & DePaolis L.L.P to hold negligent operators responsible.

About the Author
Peter DePaolis joined the firm in 1980 and has since represented a large number of individuals involved in automobile collisions, truck accidents, bus crashes, defective products, and medical malpractice cases. A significant portion of Mr. DePaolis’ practice is devoted to working on behalf of people suffering from asbestosis, mesothelioma, and other asbestos-related cancers. He has led his firm’s fight against the asbestos industry and has recovered over $30 million in damages for asbestos victims and their families.