Venice Boat Accident Attorney
With its balmy weather and pristine beaches, Florida is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the U.S. and has proven to be especially attractive to those who are looking to get out on the water. Unfortunately, the resulting increase in boating activity does come at a cost. In fact, in the last few years, the U.S. Coast Guard has consistently rated Florida one of the most dangerous states for boaters in the country. To learn more about your own legal options following a boating accident, please contact one of our experienced Venice boat accident attorneys today.
Types of Boating Accidents
Most boating accidents fall under one of a few different categories, including:
- Collisions with fixed objects;
- Accidents resulting from flooding or swamping;
- Grounding-related accidents; and
- Accidents involving capsizing.
According to the U.S. Coast Guard, the majority of boating accidents in Florida involve collisions, both with fixed objects and with other boats. In these cases, falls overboard were the leading cause of death in boaters, with drowning as the primary cause of death. Tragically, many of these fatalities could have been avoided, with the Coast Guard estimating that as many as 81 percent of victims weren’t wearing life jackets. Collisions also tend to result in the most serious types of injuries, including lacerations, broken bones, and head trauma.
Boating Accident Causes
Although boating accidents have a number of different causes, most can be attributed to carelessness, with the two most common examples of this negligence, including:
- Failing to keep a proper lookout; and
- Operator inattention.
For instance, in 2017, 38 percent of all boat accidents were attributed to these two causes. These are, however, far from the only causes of boating accidents, which are also often the result of:
- Operator inexperience;
- Speeding; and
- Mechanical failure.
Adverse weather conditions, intoxication, congested waters, the violation of navigation rules, and the force of waves can also contribute to the type and severity of boating accidents.
Who can be held liable for a boating accident depends on the specific circumstances of the case in question. There are, however, some general rules about liability when it comes to boating accidents. When two boats collide, for instance, both operators will almost always be held at least partially responsible for the accident. Determining liability can become more complicated when the accident didn’t involve another object. In these cases, courts will look at a number of factors to decide whether the boat’s operator was at fault, including:
- The speed at which the boat was traveling;
- The visibility and weather conditions at the time of the accident;
- The level of boat traffic; and
- Whether the boats were in a no wake zone.
Boat owners can also be held liable for injuries resulting from their failure to provide passengers with the proper safety equipment, such as life jackets, life rings, flares, navigation lights, and fire extinguishers.
Were You Injured in a Boat Accident?
At Hale Law, we work hard to help our clients obtain the compensation they deserve. If you were injured in a boat accident that was someone else’s fault, please reach out to our legal team by calling 941-735-4529 to learn more about your legal options from one of our dedicated Venice boat accident attorneys.