South Florida is famous for endless beached, sandbars, rich fisheries, which are all perfect for boating excursions. Unfortunately, the our waterways are overcrowded with commercial vessels, cruise ships, recreational boats as well as jet skis leading to high rates of boating accidents leading to serious injuries or even death.
The first to preventing serious injury from a boating accident is to know all the rules and regulations for boat owners and operators. There are specific rules governing boat operation depending on the location and even the season. South Florida waterways are not only shared with other boaters but with rare marine lifetime that is unique to Florida. A number of species such as rare turtles and endangered manatees are protected by laws. During migration or reproductive seasons laws and regulations limits where and at what speed boating traffic can operate. Knowing these regulations can prevent an excessive fine or an injury from a collision with a large manatee. There are also laws regulating the type and amount of safety equipment that must be on board such as long range communications equipment and life vests. In addition there are laws limiting the amount of alcohol a boat operator may consume without risking being charged with boating under the influence.
If an injury occurs during a boating excursion, safety becomes paramount. It is important to seek medical assistance as soon as possible. A common cause of injury in a boating accident involves brain injury from depriving the brain of oxygen in a drowning. Serious injuries such as bone fractures and concussions are also common when boat passengers fall or are thrown off the vessel in a collision with another boat or object. When safe to do so, document the accident by taking note of the boat operators license, registration number, the location of the accident, the water and weather conditions at the time of the accident and the contact information for other individuals involved in the accident.
Following an injury causing boating accident, it is important to document the treatment of your injuries. We recommend keeping a diary where you can document frequency and type of treatment, any incurred expenses, missed work and the treatment progress. If a claim for damages is denied, it is important to have evidence sufficient to prove the expenses incurred as a result of a boating accident. With time, memories tend to fade and records may become lost which the insurance companies use to avoid providing just compensation for the victims of boating accidents.
The Law Offices of Perazzo Law Firm aggressively represents victims of boating and personal watercraft incidents. Many boat and personal watercraft (jet ski) owners are inexperienced and do not have the proper training and/or experience to operate their vessels upon the navigable waters of the State of Florida. Unfortunately, it is not uncommon to read about a boat or jet ski operator who was under the influence of alcohol or drugs when the accident occurred.
If you or a family member has been the victim of a boating accident you should contact us immediately to protect your rights. Contact us online or call us at (786) 529-7411 to set up a FREE consultation.