Spring is a popular time for boating in South Florida, since the area has many waterways, a mild climate, and great conditions for spring fishing. However, Florida also leads the US in the number of boating accidents each year. In 2010, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, 79 fatal boating accidents took place and 668 serious boating accidents took place on Florida’s waterways. There are many ways to prevent these types of Miami boating accidents:
1) Get boating classes and training. In many cases, Florida boating accidents are caused by inexperience and lack of training. Training and classes give boaters the experience and skills they need to stay safe on the water, and helps boaters understand how to avoid an accident on the water.
2) Do not speed. Speed is a factor in many boating fatalities and speeding is more likely to cause serious injuries, including Miami brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, and other boating-related injuries.
3) Wear a life jacket at all times. Life jackets are essential for everyone on board. If the boat is capsized, life jackets can save lives.
4) Do not use controlled substances when boating. Many people understand the devastation that Miami drunk driving accidents can cause, but there is less awareness about Boating Under the Influence (BUI). BUI is just as dangerous and just as illegal as drunk driving, and can just as easily lead to an accident. Boaters need motor control and good judgment, and controlled substances can negatively affect both.
5) Stay alert when boating. Many people are now aware that distracted driving can cause Miami car accidents and traffic accidents, but distraction is still one of the leading causes of boating accidents in South Florida. It is important to keep focus on boating when on the water, and also to have a lookout who can check for swimmers, other boaters, and other potential hazards in the water. In fact, in some ways, boating distracted can be even more dangerous than distracted driving, since waterways do not have lanes and clear lines of traffic the way that roadways do. Boaters also may need to contend with weather conditions, wildlife, and natural obstacles as well as other boaters, making distraction even more of a risk.
6) If you are taking a boat tour, check boat tour operators carefully. Miami tourism season includes many interesting water excursions and boat tours. Many have excellent safety records, but it is up to you to verify what precautions a boating tour operator takes to keep you safe. A reputable operator will be more than happy to explain all the precautions taken to keep you safe.
If you have been injured in a Miami boating accident, contact the Flaxman Law Group to schedule a free, no obligation appointment to discuss your case. The Flaxman Law Group is a full service law firm with offices right in Miami. The legal team at the Flaxman Law Group has successfully worked with thousands of South Florida personal injury victims and is committed to helping each victim with professionalism and compassion.