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Protecting Your Rights in Boating Accidents

Florida has 1200 miles of coastline, the longest coastline in the country, offering countless boating, sailing, and fishing opportunities. It is known as a boater’s paradise, having more registered recreational boats in Florida than any other state in the nation. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is responsible for reviewing, analyzing, and compiling boating accident data for the state. Sadly, Florida is reported as the number one state in the country for boating accidents. The Boating Accident Statistical Report in 2020 advised there were 836 boating accidents, including 79 deaths, which is a 16% increase from 2019. https://myfwc.com/boating/safety-education/accidents/

Florida Boating Laws

Florida boating laws are found in Florida Statute Chapter 327, “Florida Vessel Safety Law,” and Chapter 328, “Uniform Certificate of Title for Vessels Act.” In addition to commercial vessels, such as cruise ships and barges, recreational boats include yachts, pontoons, party boats, motorboats, cabin cruisers, and non-motorized vessels. Personal watercraft such as jet skis are classified as boats and are subject to the same laws as other vessels.

Common Causes of Injuries and Fatalities to the Crew and Passengers include:

  • Boating under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Operator errors such as poor judgment and lack of experience
  • Excessive speed
  • Hazardous boating conditions
  • Improper forward watch
  • Capsizing
  • Drowning from falling overboard
  • Improper usage or lack of safety equipment
  • Boat design defects or lack of vessel maintenance
  • Collisions with other boating vessels or objects in the water
  • Slip and falls

Questions to Consider When Filing a Claim in Florida for a Boating Accident:

  • Were the parties under the influence of drugs, alcohol, or prescription medications?
  • Is the claim within the statute of limitations?
  • Where did the accident occur?
  • Was safety equipment provided, and were the parties compliant with its usage?
  • Where is the origin of the boat and trailer? Were they registered?
  • Do any of the parties have pre-existing medical conditions?
  • Were hazardous weather conditions a factor?
  • Were the waterways overcrowded, such as during a holiday?

Navigate the Legal System with an Experienced Personal Injury Law Firm

If you have sustained injuries and property damage or have lost a loved one in a recreational or commercial boating accident in Florida, the personal injury attorneys at Orlando Accident Attorney can protect your rights and hold the negligent party accountable. Negligence is a failure to provide reasonable care, which can result in damages. Proving negligence and recklessness entitles a plaintiff to be awarded compensation for medical bills, lost income, pain and suffering, disfigurement, property damage, or the wrongful death of a loved one. Our law firm has more than two decades of experience handling personal injury claims and catastrophic injuries. We fight for our clients to achieve financial stability during their recovery or while grieving the loss of a family member.

Comparative Fault

An injured party can file a lawsuit and be awarded compensation for damages, even if they share in the negligence that caused the accident. However, a plaintiff’s damages may be reduced if their actions contributed to the incident, and they are partially at fault. In a civil claim, a defendant or an insurance company frequently blames the victim to minimize a settlement or an award, even if there is no comparative fault. It is essential to have an experienced attorney to investigate the accident for causative factors and advocate for the victim.

We are Recognized Nationwide in Complex Litigation Cases

Most boating tragedies caused by negligence are preventable. Orlando Accident Attorney has the knowledge and resources to aggressively defend your rights. We thoroughly investigate each claim, gather accident reports, interview witnesses for testimony, and review medical records to determine the severity of your injuries. We identify those that may have liability in a claim. It may include the boat operator, boat owner, the boat manufacturer, and others. Our legal team enters into aggressive negotiations with insurance carriers and defendants for fair settlement offers. We are always prepared to present the case to a jury trial

Contact Orlando Accident Attorney at our Winter Park, Florida office at (407) 706-3909 for a no-obligation consultation. We successfully represent boating accident victims and families for wrongful death claims throughout Florida.