In 2013, there were 736 reported boating accidents in the state of Florida and over 60 of those accidents resulted in at least one death, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. Furthermore, over 400 people suffered injuries in those 736 boat accidents. This is quite troubling to our team of Miami maritime lawyers. We want everyone to enjoy safe and memorable boating trips.
You may be asking yourself, “Why do so many accidents occur in Florida waters?” To be fair, Florida leads the nation in the total number of registered boats with nearly 900,000 on the books. Given the sheer volume of boaters, the risk of serious boating accidents rises.
Causes of Boat Accidents in Florida and Across the Country
A boat accident can occur when a boat, watercraft, jet ski, sea-doo, or any other vessel is involved in an incident that causes significant harm to an individual, or individuals, or property. The most common types of boating accidents include:
- Vessels colliding with one another
- Vessels colliding with a fixed object (e.g., a marker)
- Vessels colliding with a floating object (e.g., a crab pot, netting, etc.)
- Accidents involving people on jet skis, water skis, or other objects
- Accidents involving a passenger on a boat falling overboard
- Running aground
- Vessels sinking
- Vessels flooding
- Vessels swamping
- Vessels catching on fire or exploding
Understanding Your Legal Rights When Injured in a Boat Accident
If you or a loved one was seriously hurt while on a boat or were hit by a boat, you may be able to pursue a claim for your injuries. However, the legal basis for a claim must be established. This means there must be evidence that the incident occurred because of the negligence or wrongdoing of an individual or entity.
Depending on what caused your injury, you may have a viable boat accident injury claim against the manufacturer of the vessel, if there is evidence that a defect within the vessel caused the incident (e.g., a sudden fire or sudden mechanical failure).
If you or a loved one was harmed due to the carelessness or recklessness of a boat operator, you may be able to pursue a claim against the operator individually. This usually occurs when the incident was caused by a boat operator who was intoxicated or did not have proper training resulting in a collision, sinking, capsizing, etc.
Contact a Florida Personal Injury Attorney Today
A boating accident can turn a fun day on the water into a tragic accident in the blink of an eye. If you or a loved one suffered significant injuries, you need experienced representation by attorneys who understand both Florida law and maritime law. The boat accident attorneys at Gerson & Schwartz, PA are licensed to practice law in all Florida state and federal courts. We are affiliated with other lawyers in virtually all jurisdictions where we are not admitted to practice. Our Florida law offices are located in the heart of Miami, Florida close to the port of Miami and Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale. All cases are handled on a contingent fee so there are no attorney’s fees unless we recover money on your behalf. Contact us today at for a consultation at 1-877-475-2905.