Who Is Liable for a Parasailing Accident in Hawaii?

Glenn Honda | | Personal Injury

Parasailing is a wildly popular recreational activity throughout Hawaii that involves pulling leisure-seekers or thrill-seekers behind boats on parasail wings. Once someone is harnessed in, they’re connected to the boat via a towline and are left to their own devices — with very little to no control over the contraption they’re in. Generally, there is very little to no guidance or training.

While parasailing is exciting, it is also identified as one of the most dangerous water sports for visitors and residents of Hawaii. If you’ve been injured as a result of a parasailing company’s negligence, it’s time to consult with an experienced Honolulu personal injury attorney.

Parasailing Accidents

When it comes to an industry as unregulated as parasailing, a lot can go wrong, and parasailing accidents come in many dangerous forms.

Failures related to the harness

The parasailing harness someone is strapped into is something of a lifeline. It’s important to note that old, worn harnesses that fail and cause parasailers to fall are a cause of serious parasailing accidents. Any parasailer should first check to make sure that their harness is in good condition beforehand.

Accidents caused by high winds

While parasailing companies are not bound by strict regulations – or many regulations at all – operators are advised to pay careful attention to the weather and to proceed with caution in relation to it. High winds are especially dangerous, for they cause parasailers to swerve directions or lose or gain altitude suddenly. Responsible parasailing companies that put their guests’ safety first should cancel the trip when the winds are too high. There are, however, too many parasailing operators that fail to adopt this approach.

Accidents caused by faulty equipment

There are no mandatory equipment inspections in the parasailing industry, and accidents involving the following are not uncommon:

  • Failures related to the parasail wings
  • Mechanical failures related to the towboat
  • Failures related to the operation of the towboat
  • Winch failures

Failures Related to the Towline

General statistical findings report that accidents involving parasailing line breaks are the number one cause of parasailing fatalities. In fact, the knots used for dragging parasailers greatly decrease the overall strength of even new towlines.

The wear and tear caused by the salt, sun, wind, water, and frequent use amplify the dangerous effects. If the parasailing company in question doesn’t show clear attentiveness to maintenance, they may be found negligent in the event of a parasailing accident.

Accidents Caused by Inexperienced Crews

When anyone parasails, they put their safety in the hands of the boat’s crew. If the crew hasn’t received the proper safety training, is stretched too thin, or is otherwise overworked or distracted, it puts the parasailer at risk.

Parasailing in Hawaii: Common Accidents

Often, parasailing accidents are caused by equipment failure of some kind or by operators who have inadequate training. Because these accidents generally amount to the parasailer falling from a considerable height – or colliding with objects in their path – the results tend to be catastrophic.

The parasailer is strapped into a harness that can be difficult to free themselves from and can make it far more difficult to save themselves in the event of an accident, which leaves them vulnerable to drowning.

The injuries that are most closely associated with parasailing accidents are often life-threatening, including:

  • Severe traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
  • Spinal cord injuries, including paralysis
  • Multiple bone breaks, including compound breaks
  • Limb loss and injuries requiring amputation
  • Internal injuries, including internal bleeding
  • Injuries related to drowning
  • Cardiac arrest

If you’ve been injured as a result of a parasailing operation’s negligence, the physical, financial, and psychological losses you experience are likely to be immense.

Liability of a Parasailing Company

Many parasailing companies require participants to sign waivers upfront, and many people who sign them believe they are an absolute bar to seeking compensation in the event of an injury-causing accident.

While this is by design on the part of the parasailing enterprise, it’s not necessarily true – and the same goes for hotels and cruises that organize these activities. The law affords victims of accidents that are caused by the negligence of others a means of recovering their losses, and while the path forward is complicated, a dedicated personal injury attorney has the knowledge, legal skill, and resources to help. We can fiercely advocate for your legal rights in focused pursuit of the compensation to which you’re entitled.

Reach Out to an Experienced Hawaii Accident Attorney Today

If you or someone you care about has been injured in a parasailing accident that was caused by someone else’s negligence, obtaining just compensation is important to your recovery. Work closely with a skilled injury attorney in Hawaii. At Recovery Law Center, we are compassionate towards our clients’ uncertainties. We dedicate our practice to helping clients like you prevail with advantageous outcomes that support your legal rights and fullest recoveries.

Contact us by phone at 808-427-3088 or use our online form to request more information today.

Glenn T. Honda

For over 29 years, attorney Glenn Honda has helped people injured in accidents throughout Hawaii get the best outcome for their case, whether it’s maximizing their settlement, or balancing costs and risks vs. putting the whole experience behind them. As the founding attorney of the Recovery Law Center, he is passionate about helping his clients with their physical, emotional and financial recovery. Mr. Honda will fight to get you coverage for your medical bills, lost wages, damaged property and other costs related to your accident.

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