Articles

Personal Injury - When Accidents Happen on Vacation

By: Attorney Thomas R. Smith

Know when to consult a lawyer when you are injured on vacation

There are, of course, a variety of ways that you might be injured on vacation, or traveling to a vacation. Airports are arenas for hustling, rushing, anxious travelers to catch flights, often creating hazards for fellow travelers. Airports themselves may have limited liability for injuries suffered on their premises. Private establishments, such as restaurants or bars, within the airport have a duty to provide you with a reasonably safe place to sit, relax and enjoy meals. If they fail to meet that obligation and you are injured, you may be entitled to recover compensation.

Much attention has been drawn recently to delays suffered by passengers sitting and suffering hour after hour waiting to deplane or takeoff. Recently, a few states have enacted an Airline Passengers’ Bill of Rights, which specifically outlines how an airline is required to treat a passenger and whether or not an airline is required to offer compensation for delays. Currently, New Jersey does not have such a law, but a bill to enact one is pending in the Legislature.

Cruise ship injuries have gained notarity as such vacations have become more popular. A cruise ship is no different than a hotel on land - both have the duty to provide a reasonably safe place for you. Injuries suffered by you because of their failure to do so, may entitle you to compensation.

Tours and boat rides may be dangerous when traveling to other countries while on vacation. Operators neither licensed, nor connected with a reputable resort or hotel present hazardous opportunities for serious injuries. Often times their equipment is defective and does meet standards which are commonplace in the United States. Many of these operators have no insurance, leaving you without recourse if injured due to their negligence. While on vacation, it is important to only choose reputable tour companies.

Many people enjoy amusement parks, theme parks or water parks while on vacation. Injuries on defective rides, or improperly maintained walkways within such parks are not uncommon. Hundreds of people are left each year with neck, back and head injuries from amusement and theme park mishaps, causing them to spend significant time in hospitals or getting other medical treatment instead of enjoying their vacation. Some states do not regulate safety procedures for amusement and theme parks.

Once you have landed at your destination, you may rent a car to enjoy your vacation. All persons using the roadways have a duty to operate their motor vehicles in a reasonably safe manner. Failing to do so, causing an accident and injuries, may result in liability. It is important for you to know that the car you are renting is sufficiently insured either through the rental car agency, or your own policy.

If you do suffer an injury while on vacation it is vital that you notify the manager of your hotel, the captain of the ship, the manager of the amusement park, so there is a record of what happened. When you come home, you want to be able to access the person whom you notified and the documentation they created on the particulars of your accident.

Some states offer immunity to certain recreational or vacation establishments from civil liability for negligence, unless certain conditions are met. For example, in New Jersey, amusement park and amusement ride owners are protected from injuries to riders unless the accident has been reported to the owner within ninety (90) days.

If a lawsuit needs to filed, you may be limited as to where it can be filed, depending on the type of accident you had and where it happened.

If your vacation has been spoiled by an accident, it is important that you contact an experienced personal injury lawyer to protect your rights right away.

Learn more about Personal Injury & Accident Law

 

Legal Resources:
Articles Blogs Video Center Glossary

1-800-432-LAWS