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Part I: 3 things you should know before boating in San Diego

One of the many benefits of living so close to the Pacific Ocean is the ability to pass the time on the open water, whether in a speedboat, sailboat or Jet Ski. There are countless ways to enjoy not only the ocean, but also the many lakes and rivers in and around San Diego.

Before you head out with friends to go fishing or take your kids to go waterskiing, here are three things you should know about boating in southern California.

Summer is the most dangerous time of year for boating accidents in California. According to the California Department of Boating and Waterways, there were 473 boating accidents in the state in 2012. Of those, 252 accidents - over 50 percent of the total number of incidents - took place during the summer.

As you would probably expect, the weekend was the most dangerous time of week on the water. Therefore, while you always want to be careful when on the water, you may want to take extra precautions when boating on a summer weekend.

Boating accidents often lead to serious injuries or even fatalities. With the sharp increase in the number of boating accidents in the summer, there is also a rise in the number of people killed or injured in such collisions.

In all, 22 people lost their lives in boating accidents in California during the summer of 2012 - over 40 percent of the total 53 boating fatalities that year. In San Diego County alone, 42 boating accidents in 2012 led to 30 injuries, according to the California Department of Boating and Waterways.

An attorney can help you get medical care after a boating accident. Depending on the type of incident, serious injuries can result after a boating accident. For instance, you could suffer a head or neck injury or broken bones from falling inside the boat or falling overboard. In addition, if you fall overboard, near-drowning events can have serious consequences, particularly if you are deprived of oxygen for a significant period of time.

If you have been in a boating accident, but were afraid to see a doctor because you weren't sure how you would pay for it, it is time to call an attorney. We will help you see a board-certified doctor who will not ask for any money until your case is settled. Don't hesitate. The sooner you call after the accident, the more likely a doctor will be able to treat your injuries properly.

What is your favorite summertime activity on the water? In our next post, we will discuss the best ways to stay safe when boating in southern California.

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