The Keys to Safe Boating in Nevada

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We all know that Nevada is home to some of the most beautiful bodies of water in the country, including Lake Mead, Lake Mohave, Lake Tahoe and Topaz Lake. Those are just a few. Nevada has more than 200 lakes and reservoirs, not to mention some 600 rivers and streams. It's no wonder that Nevada residents and people from neighboring states spend at least part of their summers boating here.

Just as with driving a motor vehicle, those who take the helm of boats need to have undergone the mandated boating education classes. They also need to know and obey the state's boating laws, have the proper equipment on board and practice boating safety. The stakes are too high for you, your passengers and others on our waterways if you don't. Boating is and should be a relaxing, enjoyable pastime. However, accidents can result in serious injuries and fatalities.

Under the law, anyone who was born in 1983 or later must have completed a boater education course. This applies to anyone who operates a 15-plus horsepower motorboat on Nevada's interstate waters. "Interstate waters" include the four lakes mentioned above as well as parts of the Colorado River System.

Even if you are not required by law to complete a boating education class, it's always a good idea to refresh your knowledge through a class. Besides improving your skills and safety, it can also help lower your insurance premiums. Further, boating laws are always subject to change. Therefore, it's essential to stay up-to-date on them.

When you go boating with someone, you're placing your safety and possibly your life in that person's hands. You should make sure that the person operating the boat has had sufficient training, the proper safety equipment on board, and enough for everyone. Just as when riding in a car, you also want to ensure that the person "at the wheel," so to speak, is not impaired by alcohol or drugs or is otherwise distracted or negligent.

If you or someone you love has been injured or worse aboard a boat and you believe that this harm could have been prevented, it's worthwhile to seek the advice of a personal injury attorney with experience dealing with boating accidents. These attorneys know what questions to ask and how to make sure that the incident is properly investigated so that you can seek the justice you deserve.

Viloria, Oliphant, Oster & Aman L.L.P. offers free consultations. To speak with a Reno personal injury attorney about your case, please contact us today.

Source: Nevada Department of Wildlife, "Boating Education Requirements," accessed Sep. 20, 2015

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