Tragic Hudson River Crash Highlights Dangers of Boating at Night

by Carmen Dellutri on August 12, 2013

Cape Coral boat accident lawyerThe tragic New York boat crash that claimed the lives of a bride and the best man just weeks before the wedding is still under investigation. Alcohol and poor lighting on a barge in the water are both potential causes.

A powerboat traveling on the Hudson River slammed into a steel barge performing work on the Tappan Zee Bridge, rendering several passengers unconscious, and hurtling the two victims into the river. The Coast Guard has said the barge was adequately lighted in compliance with federal law, but witnesses on the boat say they didn’t see it until it was too late.

As this devastating accident highlights, boating at night brings a variety of challenges, particularly navigating with poor visibility. It is important to take the proper safety precautions and have the right equipment on board. Below are a few considerations:

  • Slow down: The most important tip for night boating is to slow down. Familiar landmarks may be difficult to spot and debris or other obstacles can be difficult to see in the dark water.
  • Eliminate distractions: Operating at night requires greater concentration. An overcrowded boat, loud stereo or cell phone conversation can compromise your focus on the water. Encourage others on the boat to help you keep watch.
  • Understand lights: Navigation lights are designed so that both green and red together are visible only when another boat is approaching head-on. In other cases, you’ll see either a green or a red light if the boat is crossing your course, and a white light, if the vessel is traveling away from you.
  • Reduce glare: You can improve your night vision by minimizing onboard illumination. Most displays allow you to to adjust the backlight. Also, use spotlights sparingly, as they can affect your ability to see in the dark and blind other boaters.


The Dellutri Law Group is focused on making bad situations better and putting lives back together. If you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a Cape Coral accident caused by someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation.

To learn more about your legal options, contact our experienced Cape Coral injury attorneys for a free consultation.

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