Florida is a state well known for its temperate weather and beautiful beaches. It offers plenty of opportunities for people to experience the sun and open sea. One way both tourists and locals enjoy their surroundings is by riding boats out into the water.
Boating and other similar activities are obviously popular and widespread in Florida. A 2013 report by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (MyFWC) noted that there were a total of 896,632 registered water vessels in Florida, making it the state with the most boat registrations in America. As one would expect, the notable number of registered boats indicates that boating accidents are a common occurrence in Florida. The same report found that there were 736 cases of boating accidents in the year 2013. Out of all these accidents, 420 incidents led to serious injuries and 62 led to fatalities.
The website of West Palm Beach law firm Schuler Halvorson Weisser Zoeller Overbeck lists the following as common causes of boating accidents in the area:
Boating Under the Influence. As it is with driving in roadways, alcohol impairment can seriously affect a person’s ability to properly operate a boat.
Speeding. Speeding is another common cause for boating accidents. A boat running at too high a speed could cause passengers to fall overboard.
Reckless Boat Operation. A reckless or distracted boat operator could end up committing oversights that could lead to crucial mistakes. Most of the time, recklessness can cause a boat to capsize or turn over in the water.
Improper Safety Equipment. Larger boats and vessels meant for the public can become liable for accidents and injuries if the operator fails to provide proper safety equipment. Plenty of victims end up drowning after a boating accident, so it’s important that all passengers are equipped with life jackets.
Failure to Follow Safety Regulations. The most crucial way operators can avoid accidents is by making sure to adhere to safety regulations and precautions. Failure to do so can end in catastrophic accidents.
Boating accidents does not have to be part of the norm in Florida. There are ways operators can ensure that such catastrophic events will no longer continue on in the future. Aside from adhering to specific laws and policies, reckless operators should also be held accountable for their actions. Anyone who has been a victim of a boating accident should not hesitate to seek out proper legal counsel.Read More