Everyone knows that you must follow the rules of the road when you drive a car. The rules on the water, however, may be less well known.
If you are an avid boater, you should be aware of the applicable boating laws and requirements. Alabama boating law is just as important as traffic law, and failure to comply can result in consequences.
If you have questions about boating laws in Alabama, our team of experienced Birmingham boating accident attorneys can help.
Talk to us today to learn more about your rights and responsibilities under Alabama boating law.
Alabama Boating Law: An Overview
Deaths resulting from boat accidents in Alabama are on the rise. Often, these deaths can be prevented by taking proper precautions and following the requisite boating laws in Alabama.
To better protect yourself, your passengers, and others on the water, it is essential that you know and understand these laws and regulations.
Legal Requirements for Boat Operation in Alabama
The Marine Police Division of the Department of Natural Resources regulates boating laws in Alabama. There are a number of requirements that you must adhere to before lawfully operating a boat in Alabama.
Below are a few of these requirements:
- Watercraft must be registered;
- No person under the age of 12 may operate a motorized vessel;
- As a boat owner in Alabama, you must have a valid certification number; and
- While boating, you must have a wearable personal flotation device (PFD) for every person on board.
Before operating a boat at all, however, you must take an exam to obtain your boating education and operator certification/license.
Is Boat Insurance Required in Alabama?
The State of Alabama does not mandate liability insurance for boaters. However, this does not necessarily mean that you should not have some form of insurance coverage.
Even if Alabama does not require insurance coverage, it may still be a good idea. If you are responsible for damages that occur in an accident, having insurance can ultimately be beneficial.
Boat Accident Laws
After an accident on Alabama waters, it is important to know how to respond. In the event an accident occurs, you may be subject to strict reporting requirements.
You must report an accident to the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Marine Patrol Division if any of the following occur:
- Injury, or
- Damage exceeding $50.00.
If any of the above occurs, you must submit your report within 10 days of the accident.
Contact a Birmingham Boat Accident Lawyer
Boating can be an enjoyable activity to take part in. However, failure to do so safely and in compliance with the requirements under Alabama boating law can result in harm to yourself and others.
Thus, it is important to know the rules and regulations before taking a boat out on Alabama waters. The attorneys at Dagney Johnson Law Group have been helping clients in Alabama for over 40 years, and we are ready to do the same for you.
If you have questions about the legal requirements for boat operation in Alabama or were injured in a boat accident, please don’t hesitate to contact our team today online or by phone at (205) 937-6564 to see how we can help.