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3 Most Common Causes of Boating Accidents in Florida


boat driving too fast may be causing a boating accident in Florida

There are more than 800 boating accidents in Florida each year. With that in mind, boaters are encouraged to learn more about the most common causes of boating accidents and the best prevention methods. 

If you’ve suffered injuries resulting from a boat collision, it’s in your best interest to contact a skilled boating accident lawyer as soon as possible. Our boating accident attorneys can help you determine liability, build a solid case, and negotiate maximum compensation for your injuries. 

Contact us today to speak with an experienced boating accident lawyer in Florida. 

This article discusses the primary causes of boating accidents in Florida. Continue reading to learn about the most common boating risks and how to keep you and your family safe the next time you’re out on the water. 

1 Neglecting to Keep an Eye Out For Collisions 

Improper forward watch happens when a boat operator fails to maintain awareness of potential hazards in the boat’s path. That can include mile markers, other boats, rocks, debris, and more. 

If your boat hits an object, it can lead to devastating injuries and damages. That’s true even if you’re drifting or traveling at slow speeds. Unfortunately, many boating accidents occur due to the operator taking their attention away from safe navigation. 

2 Capsized Boats 

Capsized boats are the leading cause of boating accident fatalities. In many cases, boats capsize due to decreased visibility, operator distraction, or boating while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. 

Further, smaller boats are more likely to capsize when they anchor from the rear (stern) of the boat. That’s because boats are designed to navigate through rough waves front (bow) first. If a rear-anchored small boat encounters rough waves or large swells, it can result in immediate flooding and eventual capsize. 

3 Occupant Ejection 

When you factor in severe weather conditions, choppy waters, and sharp boating maneuvers, it’s not hard to see how easy it is for a person to go overboard. Overboard ejections are even more likely to occur to powerboat passengers. 

However, anyone who is not safely seated while the boat is moving or in choppy waters is at risk of going overboard. That’s true regardless of the vessel. 

If you’ve been involved in an accident on the water, it’s recommended that you consult with a boating accident lawyer to discuss your case. Proving negligence and receiving maximum compensation requires a proven boating accident attorney’s skill, experience, and knowledge in Florida. 

Ways to Prevent Boating Accidents in Florida

Some boating accidents are inescapable. However, you can avoid boat collisions in many cases by taking precautions. Listed below are a few tips to help prevent unnecessary boating accident injuries. 

  1. Remain aware of your surroundings: The best way to prevent improper forward watch is to survey in front, behind continually, and on the boat’s sides. You should be checking for other boats, debris, mile markers, choppy water, etc. It’s important to note that the boat captain/operator should remain vigilant even when drifting or idle. 
  2. Take Steps to Prevent Capsizing: Boat operators should be extra careful when boating at night, docking, or anchoring. Further, drinking alcohol or consuming drugs while operating a boat drastically increases the likelihood of capsizing. It’s best to leave the drinking for the passengers. Lastly, boat operators should always anchor their craft from the front (bow), not the rear (stern) or the sides. 
  3. Limit The Chances of Going Overboard: You can’t eliminate the risk of going overboard 100 percent of the time. However, by taking the following precautions, you can limit the likelihood of a passenger going overboard. For starters, all passengers should remain seated while the boat is moving. Further, boat operators are encouraged to keep an eye on the security and safety of passengers at all times. 

The precautions listed above can’t guarantee an accident-free boat trip. However, neglecting to follow them drastically increases the chances of a catastrophic accident. 

Contact a Boating Accident Lawyer Today

Suppose you’ve been injured in a boat accident. In that case, it’s in your best interest to consult with a boating accident lawyer familiar with maritime law, boating regulations, and Florida personal injury laws. 

A boating accident lawyer at Schrier Law Group will: 

  • Investigate the boat accident
  • Determine liable parties 
  • Collect evidence 
  • Negotiate maximum compensation with the insurance company
  • Enlist the help of expert medical witnesses (if necessary)

If you or a loved one was injured in a boating accident due to someone else’s negligence, a boating accident attorney at Schrier Law Group could help. Contact us today for your free initial consultation.