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Woman sues over fractured spine she says was caused by a speeding Codzilla passing too close to her boat

A Revere woman who says she was just out for a nice day on the water with her husband is suing Boston Harbor Cruises for the injuries she says she suffered when the wake from its speeding Codzilla boat slammed into her much smaller Boston Whaler in 2019.

In a suit filed yesterday in US District Court in Boston, Elizabeth Maggioli says she and her husband were out on the water on Aug. 18, 2019, when her husband suddenly yelled at her to hang on:

She looked to her left and saw a massive boat known as "Codzilla", which is owned by the defendant, Boston Harbor Cruises, LLC, speeding through the harbor at excessive speeds. The boat was far too close to normal harbor traffic for the speed at which it was traveling, and which caused a massive wake. When the wake hit Elizabeth Maggioli’s tiny Whaler, it through [sic] the boat up into the air and Mrs. Maggioli became airborne as well, landing on her coccyx in the well of the boat. As a result of this thoroughly reckless maneuver, Elizabeth Maggioli suffered severe spinal fractures requiring surgery.

The complaint adds:

The defendant describes its Codzilla boat as "70 feet of marine aluminum and bad attitude, prowling the ocean with 2 turbo charged diesel engines, state of the art water jets and 2,800 horsepower. Its unique hull design makes it capable of thrilling turns and spinning on a dime to be sure to secure all hats, scarves and eyewear and bad hairpieces."

It is clear that this boat is meant to perform for thrill-seekers at high speeds, but unfortunately the maneuvers made on the day in question caused boaters in the same area to be exposed to unreasonable and unexpected dangers.

Maggioli is seeking a jury trial and unspecified damages.

Free tagging: 
PDF icon Complete complaint185.02 KB

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I pass codzilla on the water several times a week, and I am always surprised that they are allowed to operate in the manner that they do. It is a fairly large commercial boat that operates at high speeds and maneuvers in such a way that makes it pretty difficult to understand which way it is going to speed off to next, which makes staying out of its way a tad difficult. The inner and outer harbor have become more and more congested, operating a small private boat in such a manner would be reckless, never mind such a large speedboat. I'm all for the fun, I just think they should travel a bit further out before going wild.

Voting closed 51

Why it took three years to file the suit? This was pre Covid.
These types of suits usually get filed quickly.

Voting closed 10

For ambulance chasers ain't easy

Voting closed 14

They like to see the overall time and costs due to the injury, so sometimes wait.

Voting closed 35

With an edible or a couple martinis makes for an enjoyable outing and they've always been super diligent about no wake zones, etc.

This sounds like a Jonah and the whale story...

If you go, don't be embarrassed, wear the poncho, you will get wet. Flips flops recommended too as your sneakers will get soaked.

Voting closed 8

ive taken both my sons on separate occasions. the first one was a cooler day a few years ago and i was a bit underwhelmed by the experience. we went kinda fast, spun a few times and got a kinda wet.it was fun but not as intense as i was expecting it to be. i took my other son this summer on one of those 99 degree scorcher days and it was a totally different experience. we went much faster, spun much harder and more frequently and got completely soaked to the bone. the boston fire boat was out there tooling around with all its hoses spraying and we went right up beside it, got drenched and had our ears blasted by the fire boat horn. the young lady working the mic talked shit about the yankees and people from new york on multiple occasions. we went out to the deer island treatment facility and she said it was the second largest collection of human waste on the east coast after yankee stadium!! everyone loved it including the many new yorkers with yankee hats and great senses of humor. i think your experience depends on who is driving the boat and how wet they want to get everyone. i really enjoyed it and so did my son (11).

Voting closed 20

To quote Bostnkid:

i think your experience depends on who is driving the boat

Sounds like the drivers have a good amount of leeway in how they pilot the boat. I'm thinking that, on the day in question, the driver made a bad choice.

Voting closed 23

Edible or pre-drinks :)

Voting closed 9

How does "through a boat in the air" happen?

Threw perhaps... bad, lazy lawyers.

Voting closed 16

… why I haven’t yet dared use my kayak to get over to East Boston and back.
Though the guy who did it in a barrel gave me hope.

Voting closed 17

Unless there is a zone where this thing is supposed to operate and the whaler was in that zone then I think they have a strong case. Generally maritime law dictates that smaller boats get out of the way of larger boats but that is more for open water and generally assumes the smaller boat is the faster boat. In this case the larger boat is the faster boat.

For those accusing her of hiring an ambulance chaser, I do not see that with this case. Even if they lose the case it is a perfectly reasonable lawsuit if Codzilla did in fact cause the harm. Its very difficult to sustain the stated injuries in a Boston Whaler without the impact of an outside force.

It does make you think of the business model of a large commercial speedboat running freely in Boston Harbor. Also from a marketing point of view Codzilla sounds awesome but from a jury point of view all those ads might come back to chomp them in the butt.

Voting closed 33

Generally maritime law dictates that smaller boats get out of the way of larger boats

. You need to stay out of the way of certain classes of larger boats under certain conditions, but it doesn’t appear that any of them apply here: codzilla was not fishing nor operating in a narrow channel nor restricted in its ability to maneuver, etc.

Voting closed 15

...not size.

Google concepts such as "burdened vessel" for more info.

Voting closed 10

… You are responsible for your boat’s wake.

Voting closed 19