An operator involved in a boating accident is required to:

  • Stop their boat at the scene.
  • 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.

Accident Reports

Operators involved in a boating accident which results in any of the following circumstances must immediately notify the Department of Environmental Management or a nearby office of local or state police:

  • If a person is killed.
  • If a boat is stolen or vandalized (with a value of $2,000).
  • If a person is injured and requires medical attention beyond first aid.

Boat accident report forms must be submitted to the Department of Environmental Management within 24 hours of the accident.

When a person is seriously injured due to reckless operation, the operator will be charged with “operating so as to endanger, resulting in personal injury” and be imprisoned for up to 5 years.

When a person dies as a result of an injury received by the operation of any boat in reckless disregard of the safety of others, the person operating the boat will be guilty of “operating so as to endanger, resulting in death” and shall be imprisoned for up to 10 years.

Boat Accident Report Forms may be obtained from Rhode Island’s Department of Environmental Management.

http://www.dem.ri.gov/programs/bnatres/enforce/pdfs/boatacc.pdf