What to do if you’re Involved in a Boat Accident
An operator involved in a boat accident is required to:
- Stop their boat at the scene of the accident.
- Render assistance to any person who has been injured or who is in danger so long as they can do so without risking their safety or their passenger’s safety.
- Provide their name, address and boat information in writing to any person who was injured, and to the owner of any property that was damaged as a result of the accident.
Submitting a Boat Accident Report
Boat Accident Report Forms are available at offices of state parks (with lakes). Reports shall be sent to and are also available at:
State Parks Division,
1220 South Saint Francis Drive,
Santa Fe, New Mexico, 87505
An accident report must be filed with the New Mexico State Parks Division within 48 hours if:
- A person is killed or disappears from the boat.
- A person requires medical treatment beyond first aid.
- There is property damage in excess of $100.
It is illegal to knowingly make false claims or statements when reporting a collision, accident or casualty.
Law Enforcement for Boaters in New Mexico
Boating laws in New Mexico are enforced by officials from the New Mexico State Parks Division, including:
- The director, park custodians and other employees of the division.
- Every sheriff in their respective county.
- Every member of the State Police.
- The Coast Guard (on federal waterways).
Enforcement officers have the authority to stop and board boats to ensure that operators are in compliance with state and federal laws.
Always be sure that you’re familiar with the accident reporting requirements in your state. For more information on boating accident reporting, and other boating regulations in New Mexico, contact the New Mexico State Parks Division.