White Water Rafting Injuries in West Virginia
White water rafting is a lucrative business sin West Virginia, and many tourists travel to this little state to go on these exciting excursions every single year. Many white water rafting enthusiasts will visit the outposts on the New, Cheat, and Gauley rivers and enjoy the tumultuous experience of navigating one of these rafts.
While this can be a very fun outdoor adventure, white water rafting can also be very dangerous. According to CNN, there are approximately 50 white water deaths a year because many guides fail to follow the proper state regulations.
Other statistics contradict this information. For example, American Whitewater says that there were only 10 fatalities in 2006 on commercial raft trips that were headed up by a guide. None of those deaths were because an individual wasn't wearing a life jacket. More deaths occur in white water rafting trips that are not guided by a professional.
That is because the unguided trips are not held to the industry standard. According to America Outdoors, there were approximately 2 million rafters that participated in a rafting trip in West Virginia last year. Across the nation, about 9.8 million people go on white water rafting trips. In West Virginia, there were 11 fatalities between 1984 and 1999.
While fatalities aren't too common, injuries are. Typically, there are four different types of injuries that can occur on a white water rafting trip. Sometimes, participants can suffer trauma after striking an object on the boat. These can be accidents that involve striking an object in the river or striking gear in the boat. Secondly, white water rafters are at risk to traumatic stress injuries from the way that a paddler is positioned and the force of the water.
Sometimes a paddler may strike a person behind him or her, causing serious injury. The third reason for injuries in white water rafting is because of overuse injuries. These are injuries that occur when a person strains a shoulder because of too much paddling or pulls a muscle because he or she goes too long without a break. Also, there are times that rafters can suffer from submersion or environmental injuries. For example, falling out of the boat and becoming trapped in the water would be a submersion injury.
Studies show that the most common injury in white water rafting is blisters, and more than 90% of all individuals that are on these trips will report this minor injury. This is a non-litigious injury, meaning that it would be difficult to create a lawsuit for this suffering. After this, the most common injuries are those that are due to striking an object or the force of the water on the rower's equipment.
Oftentimes striking a rock in the riverbed can harm a person who is using the paddle. Most often people's shoulders are injured in these sorts of accidents. If you need more information, contact a West Virginia personal injury attorney at Mani Ellis & Layne, PLLC. The lawyers at this firm may be able to tackle your white water rafting case and seek the compensation that you desire.