Statistics show that as of October 2012, 41 people across the state had been killed in boating accidents. That is a slight decrease from 49 during the same time period in 2011. Authorities are concerned, however, since last year there was an increase in the number of fatal Florida boating accidents during the final months of the year. In all of 2011, there were 67 boating fatalities in Florida, with most occurring during November and August.
As a result, there is a public safety awareness campaign underway to ensure that boaters understand the risks and stay safe on the water. According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and other experts, there are several things boaters can do to keep safe:
1) Always wear a life jacket and insist that passengers do, as well. According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, the leading cause of death in boating accidents is falls overboard. Falls overboard can cause Miami head injuries as well as drowning, and lifejackets can help keep a victim afloat until help arrives.
2) Boat only when sober. In 2011, drugs and alcohol played a role in 15% of fatal boating accidents across Florida. In 90% of cases, the victims were men. Just as Miami drunk driving accidents are a serious concern, DUI boating accidents are also a serious concern. Just as you need all your concentration to drive, you also need to be sober and have your full focus when you are boating.
3) Have a good communication system in place. Tell someone where you will be headed and what time you will be back if you are heading out boating. This way, if you are in a Miami boating accident, someone will know when you do not make it home on time and can alert the authorities, increasing the chances that you will be found.
4) Stay alert and aware of your surroundings. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission suggests keeping a 360-degree view of your surroundings so that you can be aware of what is around you.
5) Get training – including safety training. Inexperienced boaters are more likely to be involved in Miami boating accidents and more likely to sustain Miami personal injury in a boating accident. Knowing how to operate a boat safely and knowing what to do if you are in a collision or accident can increase the chances that you’ll be able to avoid the accident in the first place. Knowing what to do if an accident does occur increases your chances of surviving the accident and minimizing your injuries.
If you have been injured in a Miami boating accident that you believe was caused by someone’s recklessness or negligence, contact the Flaxman Law Group today to arrange for a no obligation, no-cost consultation with a personal injury attorney. Your case may be worth more than you think and the compensation that you get from a legal claim can help pay for property damage, medical costs, and other expenses related to your injury. Pursuing a legal claim can minimize the financial impact of your injuries in the long term and can help you focus on healing and rebuilding your life after an accident.