Florida has consistently ranked as the state with the highest boating accidents since 2015.
Florida has more boating accidents and boating-related fatalities than any other state, according to the Coast Guard’s 2020 Recreational Boating Statistics Report. In their report, the Coast Guard marked Florida’s total number of boating accidents in 2020 to be 804, with 70 fatal accidents.
Boating Accidents are Surging in Florida. What can you do?
Maritime lovers and boat enthusiasts are attracted to Florida from across the country and around the world because of our beautiful waterways and our warm winters. Making Florida a top boating and yachting destination. However, Florida has seen a surge in boating accidents over the last five years, with an 18.4% increase in the total number of reported accidents and the number of fatal accidents rising by 27.3% compared to 2019.
Here’s a checklist with some tips to help keep you safe on the water – whether you are a local or simply visiting.
Boat Safety Checklist:
Sometimes you do everything right, and yet you can still be involved in a boating accident. Be aware of other vessels in the water with you, and of your surroundings.
Have necessary safety equipment on-board
Life jackets, floatation devices, fire extinguishers, first aid kits, and signaling devices are all essential items to help you be prepared.
Make sure your boat is well-maintained
Keeping your vessel well-maintained is always a great idea to help keep you and anyone on the vessel safe.
Follow the rules and laws
Rules and laws exist for a reason, and following them can keep you safe and reduce your chances of being involved in a boating accident.
Do not drink while operating your vessel
In fatal boating accidents, alcohol consumption is the leading known contributing factor leading to the accident in 18% of boating deaths in the nation.
Be aware of the weather
The last thing you want is to be stuck miles from shore during a storm. Be mindful of the weather before venturing out on your boat.
These are just a few tips to follow before operating your vessel. For more tips, contact your manufacturer, take a course, or read up on boating sites like this boat safety tips article from discoverboating.com.
Why hiring a boat accident lawyer is crucial
After taking out your vessel, if you or someone you know was involved in an accident taking legal action as soon as possible after the accident is important. Timing is everything, and making sure you have an experienced boating accident lawyer on your side as early as possible can help make or break your case. There are various regulations involved when it comes to boating accidents, including Federal, State, and even international maritime laws. As experienced boating accident lawyers, it’s our job to help you navigate through this complicated legal environment. At Long, Jean & Wechsler, P.A., we understand the law, and we use it to fight for you to get you the compensation you deserve for your injuries. We will be by your side to build your case and see it all the way through from start to finish.
Types of Boating Accidents
Boating accidents can have various causes and be the result of anything from negligence and a boating malfunction to other vessels or even the weather. Here is a list of some common boating accidents in Florida:
- Careless operation of a boat
- Excessive speeding
- Boating under the influence
- Manufacturer related boating malfunction
- Mechanic related boating malfunction
- Inexperienced boat driver
- Boat passenger recklessness
- Distracted piloting of a boat
- Severe weather
What options are available for boating accident victims?
You may be able to file a lawsuit to seek compensation for your injuries and/or property damage. Each boating accident has its own unique variables. To better understand your legal options and to better serve your legal needs, contact a boating accident lawyer today from Long, Jean & Wechsler, P.A., and we’ll help you determine what your case may be worth.