As the technology of the boating industry improves and the technology of boating accident reconstruction keeps pace, so has the seriousness and complexity of boating accidents. Likewise, monetary jury judgments resulting from boating incident litigation have skyrocketed in recent years to record amounts.
ATA Associates was hired to analyze a recent California case that produced a record $32 million judgment to the plaintiffs, who were thrown from a boat and struck by the propeller. The jury found the boat manufacturer’s vessel defective in awarding the plaintiffs the record sum.
In a 2008 California case, a woman who was permanently brain injured when struck by a jet ski watercraft was awarded $21.7 million. The jury found that the jet ski could not be properly steered when the operator eased off the hand controlled throttle.
The investigation and reconstruction of boating accidents is a unique forensic discipline. The advancement of devices and technologies with which to measure and analyze forces and behavior involved in a boating accident has greatly improved the thoroughness and accuracy of the information collected.
Robert Swint, founder and CEO of ATA Associates, Inc., one of the nation’s leading experts in marine and watercraft accident reconstruction states:
“With the trend toward larger monetary damage awards, the necessity for thorough and complete analysis and accurate accident reconstruction of a boating incident becomes increasingly important. Here at ATA Associates, our engineers and technicians have developed techniques for instrumentation, photography and position tracking that support precise and definitive analysis of test data that provides for convincing testimony to support litigation actions.”
Advanced forensic technology and testing can be applied to a wide range of marine vessels including runabouts, fishing boats, ski boats, houseboats, pontoon boats, jet skis and amusement craft as well as commercial craft, such as commercial work vessels, tug boats, freighters, passenger liners, touring boats and floating restaurants.
In addition to the field and laboratory testing, ATA Associates also performs operational analysis along with crash and impact angle determinations. Additionally, we offer full multimedia graphics support, including full 3D animation.
ATA also provide services in government and industry standards application, human factors and safety analysis. We can also provide counsel as to warnings and marine signage, naval architecture and marine engineering.
ATA Associates also offers safety informational programs to the general boating public. “2 Seconds to Survive” is a program aimed at outboard boat owners and is focused on the proper setting of the outboard motor trim tab and the serious consequences if the trim tab is not properly adjusted. This short program is free to the public and can be viewed on the ATA Associates website at: http://www.ataassociates.com/Marine.htm