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Boating Accidents in Florida and Personal Injury

October 27, 2017

In Florida, there are on average over 600 boating accidents per year.  Last year, there were 714 reportable boating accidents and 421 injuries.  Sadly, some of these boating accidents are fatal with on average over 50 fatalities per year and 67 in 2016 alone.  Florida is home to “more registered boats (931,450) than any other state” according to Florida officials.  Boating accidents can be devastating and seeking recovery is complex.  Bryan W. Crews, an Orlando personal injury attorney, can help.

Negligent operators can be liable for excessive speed, grounding, hitting another boat, another boat’s wake, or failure to have the proper safety equipment onboard.  Your injury may result from being a passenger on a charter, a friend’s boat, or while operating a boat.  Boating accidents include motorboats, canoes, kayaks, pontoon boats, sail boats, jet skis, and ancillary activities such as tubing, waterskiing, or wakeboarding.  Collisions with other vessels, floating objects, skiers, towable objects, persons falling overboard, capsizing, drowning, sinking, flooding, swamping, fire or explosion, and carbon monoxide poisoning can all form the basis of a personal injury lawsuit.  Depending on where the accident or injury occurs, Florida or maritime may govern, and hiring a personal injury attorney is critical to the success of your recovery.

In May of this year, “one person was killed and a dozen other people were injured in boating accidents across Miami-Dade County.”  In one of the accidents, a boat carrying nine passengers crashed into a dock and injured four people, with one personal in critical condition.  Accidents like this are tragic and highlight the importance of safety.  Florida now requires operators to take an approved boating safety course before being issued a Florida Boating Safety Education Identification Card, with some exceptions.

Between Brevard County and Volusia County, there are over 60,000 vessels, and last year there were 44 reportable accidents.  Boating accidents are rarely the result of storms or sea conditions.  Most boating accidents involve human error and many are the result of negligence.  The question in most personal injury cases is whether the defendant acted reasonably under the circumstances.  With over 60,000 vessels operating in waterways near Orlando, all operators should be navigating with caution and they owe others a duty of care.  Operators that are not paying attention, boating under the influence, or being reckless should be held to account.

Have you been injured in a boating accident?  Contact Bryn W. Crews today at his Orlando office.  Bryan and his team handle personal injury cases throughout Orlando, Brevard County, and Volusia County.  You may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, ongoing treatment, lost wages, pain and suffering, and punitive damages.  Each case is different, and results are not guaranteed.  The skilled personal injury attorneys at Bryan W. Crews can begin working immediately.

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