Diving injuries can be life changing, and in some situations, fatal. However, in many recreational and commercial diving cases, the accident was preventable.
Scuba diving has inherent risks. Because of this, many dive operators require you to sign a liability release or waiver. However, this liability release does not excuse them from liability based on gross negligence.
A dive operator has the duty to ensure all passengers are safely transported to and from the dive site. They also are responsible for providing all necessary safety equipment. Additionally, they must thoroughly understand and convey all surface safety procedures to any passengers on their boat.
The Jones Act Benefits, as well as the Longshore & Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act, help to protect you if a diving accident occurs. With commercial diving companies, there are strict regulations, policies and procedures that must be followed. When a dive company fails to do so, they may be considered negligent. Things like improper proximity, poorly maintained rental equipment, and disregarding weather and water conditions are all negligent acts that may invalidate the liability release you signed.
If a diving accident has occurred, it is vital that you seek medical attention as soon as possible. Whether the dive operator is responsible or not, delaying medical attention is never wise. Should you have a case, failure to seek medical attention may invalidate your claims. You do not want your diving injuries to worsen.
It is also important to contact a personal injury lawyer as soon as you are physically able. Involving a lawyer immediately can help you to fully capture the developing claim as it occurs. (A lawyer can help you develop your case, remind you of important dates, and assess your potential compensation.)
As you attend appointments, you will need to gather all supporting documents. From the paperwork you signed and any incident reports to your doctors’ assessments and medical billing – you will need these documents to help a lawyer, as well as a judge, determine the appropriate level of compensation.
As professional personal injury lawyers in Baton Rouge – Waitz & Downer has years of experience representing clients with diving injuries. Contact us today if you or a loved one has been injured as the result of a diving accident.