Posted On: July 6, 2013

Boat Collision in Florida Highlights the Need for Boat Safety to Prevent Boating Accidents

According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, a boating collision that occurred in in the Florida Keys will likely result in charges. The two-boat Florida Keys accident sent nine people to hospital. Some of the victims suffered head injuries and leg injuries as a result of the accident, which saw one of the boats involved capsize. Authorities say that all injured parties are expected to recover from their injuries.

For boaters in Fort Lauderdale and other Florida communities, the incident highlights the need for boating safety. To prevent boating accidents in Fort Lauderdale and your community, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and other safety experts recommend:

1) Getting boating safety instruction. Boating safety courses can help you to learn the basics of staying safe and can even help you with insurance costs. If it has been a while since you last received instruction, consider a refresher course; it is a small investment that could save your life. If you are a new boater, stick to less challenging waters at first and take your boat out with an experienced boater as you build your skills and your confidence. In many cases, boating accidents in Fort Lauderdale and other communities occur because a boater is inexperienced or is not very familiar with safety rules.

2) Boating sober. Drunk driving accidents in Fort Lauderdale and other communities cost far too many lives each year. On the water, as on the roadways, alcohol can kill. You need proper response times and good judgment to boat safely, and this means that you cannot combine drinking and boating. Boating under the influence can result in an accident and in criminal charges, so head out on the boat only when sober. Keep in mind, too, that on the water the influence of alcohol is exacerbated. The bright sun, movement of the boat, and the reflection of the water can mean that even one drink affects your ability to operate a boat safely.

3) Boating without distraction. Distracted driving causes many car accidents in Fort Lauderdale and across Florida each year, but it can also lead to many boating accidents. On the water, a moment of distraction can mean a collision with a swimmer, boat, or inanimate object. When boating, focus on safety.

4) Using life jackets each time you are on the water. Head injuries in Fort Lauderdale are a common result of boating accidents, and if you sustain a head injury after being thrown overboard you may not be able to swim to safety or stay above water. A life jacket keeps you afloat and keeps you visible so that others can help.

5) Carefully consider what boat you use. If you own a boat, check it regularly to ensure that it is safe for the water. Even if you do not own your own boat, however, keep in mind that boating safety can affect you. If you take a boat tour, it is important to check insurance and certification for the tour boat operator and to choose a tour boat company with a good reputation.

If you have been injured in a boating accident in Fort Lauderdale or any Southern Florida community and are wondering whether you may have a legal claim, contact the Flaxman Law Group for a free consultation. The legal team at the Flaxman Law Group work with plaintiffs from all walks of life. In each case, the aim of the legal team is to find justice and fair compensation on behalf of the plaintiff.