Boater claims injuries after motor goes full speed

Kelly Holleran May 27, 2009, 7:00am

A Madison County man has filed suit against two corporations, alleging he sustained permanent injuries to his spine, low back, left hip, buttocks and legs after the boat he bought randomly surged at full speed while he was fishing.

John D. Botzman claims he purchased a new Titron VT 17 aluminum bass boat and a 24-volt Motorguide trolling motor from Nameoki Village Marine on April 26, 2007.

After he purchased the boat, Botzman discovered the trolling motor would turn on by itself at full speed while he was using it in a normal manner, according to the complaint filed May 19 in Madison County Circuit Court.

As Botzman was fishing on June 16, 2007, the motor suddenly malfunctioned and caused him to "be thrown about the boat, twisting and wrenching his hip and back attempting to maintain balance, and then was thrown over the seat, landing in the bottom of the boat," the suit states.

In addition to his injuries, Botzman incurred medical costs, lost wages and experienced extreme pain, mental anguish, suffering, permanent disability, physical restrictions and loss of a normal life, he says.

Named as defendants in the lawsuit are Nameoki Village Marine and Brunswick Corporation.

In the four-count suit, Botzman is seeking a judgment in excess of $200,000, plus costs.

He is represented by W. Michael Gnavi of Gnavi Law Offices in Edwardsville.

Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-510.

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