Cook County Record

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Man sues SailTime Chicago over alleged fire on motorboat

By Matt Russell | Jul 16, 2014

A boating company is being sued for allegedly launching a vessel that wasn't seaworthy.

Shai Wolkowicki filed suit July 8 in Cook County Circuit Court against Creative Yacht Management Inc., doing business as SailTime Chicago, alleging negligence.

According to the complaint, Wolkowicki was a passenger aboard the defendant's motorboat "Axess," which another individual had purchased through its ownership program, on May 31, when it traveled on Lake Michigan from Michigan to Chicago.

During the trip, Wolkowicki claims the boat's engine began smoking and caught fire, forcing the passengers to abandon ship several miles from shore.

The suit states records show an employee of the defendant noted a battery or electrical failure occurred three days before the incident Wolkowicki was involved in and sustained injuries from. Repair work was allegedly completed to the vessel at some point between May 28 and May 31 to fix the issue, the suit states.

The defendant is accused of failing to maintain the motorboat in a safe condition, properly inspect the boat, provide warning the boat had broken down days earlier, properly repair the motorboat and allowing the motorboat to be taken out when it was not seaworthy.

Wolkowicki is seeking damages in excess of jurisdictional limits, plus costs, and is represented by Chicago attorney Ken Hoffman of Mitchell, Hoffman & Wolf LLC.

Cook County Circuit Court Case No. 2014L007169.

This is a report on a civil lawsuit filed in Cook County Circuit Court. The details in this report come from an original complaint filed by a plaintiff. Please note, a complaint represents an accusation by a private individual, not the government. It is not an indication of guilt and it represents only one side of the story.

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