MIAMI, FL— August 4, 2011 – Accident investigators from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) have launched a probe into a recreational boating accident that left a Pinellas County teen hospitalized with critical injuries. According to WTSP 10 News, the young accident victim, who was a passenger on the back of a WaveRunner at the time, was forced to have his leg amputated upon being airlifted to a St. Petersburg hospital.
FWC investigators said 14-year-old John Dahl appeared to be riding backwards on a jetski operated by an unidentified second party when the watercraft suddenly took off at a high rate of speed, prompting him to jump off. Upon doing so, Dahl’s leg became entrapped in the towline that was being used to pull a wakeboarder at the time. It was not clear why the jetski passenger was facing the rear of the personal watercraft (PWC) at the time.
Nearby resident Robert Sapp heard the injured boy’s screams just before his son, Casey, 16, used his own jetski in an attempt to render preliminary aid to the victim. According to Casey Sapp, “When I actually got up next to that boy’s jet ski and saw his leg, it was bad.” Investigations into the injurious jetski accident were expected to be underway.
According to statistics provided by the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG), jetskis were involved in approximately 22 percent of the 4,730 recreational boating accidents reported nationwide in 2009. Such accidents reportedly resulted in 736 boating deaths.
About the Miami cruise ship injury lawyers and boat accident attorneys of Gerson & Schwartz, P.A.
With four decades of experience litigating the multifaceted personal injury and wrongful death claims of boat and cruise line passengers who are hurt or assaulted onboard, the knowledgeable Florida boating accident lawyers of Gerson & Schwartz are dedicated to protecting the rights of these individuals and fighting to provide them with the compensation they deserve. Working closely with the National Center for Victims of Crime, the Miami personal injury attorneys of Gerson & Schwartz, P.A. strive to provide justice to individuals who suffer serious injuries in a wide variety of boating accidents.