Boating / Marine Accidents
Florida has thousands of miles of some of the most beautiful navigable waters in the world. With that in mind, it should not be surprising that there are nearly 1 million registered boats in the State of Florida. With all of this fun and beauty, there is an opposing element of danger- Florida also has more boating accidents per year than any other state. As a South Florida marine accident attorney I am well aware of the risks involved in navigating Florida’s waters.
About 10,000 water vessel collisions occur across the country each year. Of these collisions, approximately 1 in 10 occurs in the State of Florida. In Florida you are not required to have yachting or boating instruction to operate watercraft. This lack of boating education means that there are numerous operators behind the wheels of boats, yachts, and other personal water vessels that do not know the nautical safety laws. You may find yourself injured in an accident with someone who had no specialized knowledge of the operating characteristics of the vessel they were driving. Likewise, safety precautions that can limit watercraft injuries (such as life jackets, and “kill switches” which turn off an engine if the operator is thrown from the helm station) may not have been in use. Our Miami boat accident lawyers can help.
In 2007, boat accidents in Florida resulted in approximately 75 deaths and nearly 400 injuries. Other statistics on boat accidents in the State of Florida include:
- Most boating accidents tend to occur from March to July between 12:00 pm and 6:00 pm.
- About 16% of those involved in boating accidents suffer injury.
- About 50% of all boating accidents are the result of inattentiveness or violation of navigation rules.
Given the dangerous nature of the sea, combined with the characteristics of boating, it is likely that a boating accident can result in serious injury or death. However, it is a common misconception that you assume all of the risks of water activities simply by embarking on a sea vessel. The watercraft operator may be responsible for your injury if:
- You hit a large wave or wake at an unsafe angle or speed;
- You were ejected from the boat;
- The vessel was operated in an improper manner or during rough weather;
- You had contact with the propellers;
- The watercraft was operated at an excessive speed;
- Navigational rules were not followed;
- A collision took place;
- The boat was in disrepair; or
- The vessel was overcrowded or overloaded
If you were injured in a boating accident due to someone else’s negligence, our Broward County maritime accident lawyers can assist you. You may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. If a violation of navigational regulations took place, the law may even provide for a rebuttable presumption in your favor. If you or someone you know has been involved in a watercraft accident, please call the Palm Beach boating accident attorneys of DRG Firm. We will represent you every step of the way. Our Miami-Dade marine/boat accident attorneys are available 24/7. We can be reached for a free consultation at 1.888.413.8353.