View Full Version : Be Careful- Insurance related

10-25-2002, 11:22 AM
I'm not going to mention too many details- just in case.

But, be careful with what you do and whom you have on your boats.

A 'friend' of mine just recently restored a nice 42-footer. The boat is incredible, now. VERY nice. But, that's not my point.

When he finished earlier this year, he got a wild hair and decided, like me, that he needed a PWC. So, he bought an older basic model (no reverse, etc.). Built his own davit system for the PWC to ride along on his boat.

Everything is set for a fun weekend now, right?

Well, he invites his buddies from work out on a Friday afternoon for some fun on the beach, BBQ, jetskeet riding, beer drinking, etc. I happen to be on the beach that day with the skiff, with my brother-in-law.

One thing leads to another, few beers here and a few beers there ...

Next thing you know, you have buddies riding your 'skeet and on your boat that know nothing about either one ... have a good buzz ... then, the unthinkable.

A fool loses control of the 'skeet, smacks the side of my friend's boat at about 40mph at a 30% angle. SERIOUSLY injures himself, and does some superficial damage (luckily) to the boat.

You learn who your friends are- quickly.

To make a long story short, my friend has not been on the water since then ... too busy fighting legal/insurance issues.

Seems that the the idiot that crashed is sueing my friend, AND their mutual employer. They are considering it a 'work event' since they left work early to go to the boat.

It's a big mess. Make sure you carry an umbrella liability policy, if you don't already have one.

My friend's boat will most likely be gone as part of the settlement to a so-called drunk co-worker that crashed my friend's 'skeet in to my friend's boat. UNBELIEVABLE, but true.

Stay well insured, and be careful.

That's why to this day, I let NO ONE ride my Sea-Doo but family. No even my closest friends get on, unless they are a passenger.

This guy may even lose the equity in his house over this "underinsured" situation.


Wayne Jeffers
10-25-2002, 11:38 AM

I think your friend's underinsurance was a secondary problem.

I think the main problem was his lack of judgment in both serving beer and in making his jet ski available to someone with unknown experience operating such craft.

It appears that you are much wiser.

Adequate insurance is a poor substitute for good judgment.

I hope things work out for your friend.


Alan D. Hyde
10-25-2002, 01:40 PM
True, Wayne.

Or (to summarize in a sentence) when a guy sits down under the back end of a cow, he shouldn't be surprised that what lands on him isn't ice cream...


Bruce Taylor
10-25-2002, 01:47 PM
What Wayne said.

Your friend let a drunken yahoo ride his deathmobile. I find it hard to care about his insurance policy.

Lucky the jerk hit a big boat and not a canoe.

10-25-2002, 01:57 PM
I don't disagree with your comments ... in fact, I agree completely.

Actually, my friend was a new boater that spent a lot of time and money restoring an older boat ... only to lose it due to over trusting and poor judgment. I just hate to see that happen.

My point was to make sure that everyone carries a liability policy (required in many marinas/harbors) to cover since 'problems.'

Definitely lucky he hit the big boat (my friend's boat, nonetheless) and not a smaller craft. Thank goodness!!!

Just a reminder that things can get out of hand quickly ... and to be continuously aware of the consequences.

Take care,


Dave Fleming
10-25-2002, 02:05 PM
No argument that the whole 'mess' was avoidable and shows a severe case of lack of judgement but, what I find disturbing is the law suit aspect.
I can see the host being and taking responsiblity for the injury to the rider but, for that person to file a lawsuit against him and ***the employer***! What 'breed of being' does things like that? Amazing, bloody amazing.
Or so says I.

[ 10-25-2002, 03:05 PM: Message edited by: Dave Fleming ]

Alan D. Hyde
10-25-2002, 02:18 PM
Yeah, thirty years ago in a small town, some boys might have taken the drunk PWC driver out behind the lodge hall and explained to him (in a way he could understand) just how chickenxxxt his failure to assume the responsibility for his own actions was.

Nowdays, there'd be another lawsuit for that...


Wayne Jeffers
10-25-2002, 02:28 PM
Let's hope this is one case in which there's a difference between filing a lawsuit and winning one. :rolleyes:

I think I heard a while back that something like 70 percent of all the world's lawyers are right here in the U. S. of A. :eek: It seems the law schools keep turning them out, whether we need them or not. ;)


Bruce Taylor
10-25-2002, 03:36 PM
What 'breed of being' does things like that?Damn good question.

We had a case before the courts a few of months ago. It seems somebody went to a BYOB party, brought his own booze, left drunk, wrapped his car around a telephone pole...then sued the party's hosts for letting him drive away drunk.

That suit was unsuccessful. However, there was another case in Canda (a couple of years ago, I think) where a woman cracked up her car after drinking at an office Xmas party. She sued her employer, and won $300,000 compensation for the brain damage she suffered (not much by American standards, I realize...lawsuit payouts are pretty small, up here).

And then there's the guy who wanted to sue his parents for having him circumcised...

10-25-2002, 03:43 PM
"When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro."

Dave Fleming
10-25-2002, 04:16 PM
If a company holds a Christmas party down here in the 'arse end' of the States, I bet it is dry these days. Wifes place of employment stopped them years ago and now gives out certificates for shopping at various stores in lieu of.
A much better deal, IMOOP, that is.