Palm Beach Gardens Boat Accident Lawyer
It probably comes as no surprise that Florida is one of the top boating states in the country. For leisure boaters, it’s an opportunity to get out on the water and have some fun. This leads to people letting their guard down. Sometimes drinking is involved, while at other times, people aren’t paying attention to their surroundings. That can lead to accidents, some of which can have catastrophic results.
If you were injured due to someone else’s negligence or by a malfunction with the boat, it’s time to contact a Palm Beach Gardens boat accident lawyer. You may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. At Smith & Ball Injury Law, our Florida personal injury attorneys have years of experience with injury claims, including boating accidents.
Florida Boating Accident Statistics
According to statistics from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission, Florida leads the country with the most registered vessels. In 2019, there were over 700 accidents. Of these accidents, 324 resulted in one or more injuries. 58 accidents resulted in one or more fatalities. Falling overboard and drowning represents the highest causes of death. Alcohol or drug use played a role in 32% of these fatalities.
Boating accidents also include incidents related to personal watercraft (PWC) and accounted for 26% of reportable boating accidents. Don’t forget paddle craft accidents also fall under boating accidents. Paddleboard, kayak, canoe, and rowboat accidents led to 14 fatalities and 13 injuries in 2019.
Common Types of Florida Boating Accidents
Collisions between vessels is the leading cause of boating accidents all across the state. Some of the other primary types of Florida boating accidents we represent clients for include:
- Collisions with fixed objects;
- Someone falling on the boat;
- Boat capsizing or sinking;
- Someone falling overboard;
- Grounding the boat or striking something underwater;
- Damage from a wake; or
- Fuel explosion or fire.
Boating under the influence is a term you should be familiar with, as someone driving a boat is held to the same standard as if they were driving a vehicle. If someone had too much to drink and cannot operate their boat safely or they have a BAC of 0.08% or more, they could be guilty of boating under the influence.
What to Do After a Florida Boating Accident
If you were involved in a Florida boating accident, you are required to stop immediately unless that puts someone in danger. You must exchange information with any other involved parties and seek assistance for anyone who may be injured. If the accident resulted in someone’s disappearance or death; damage of more than $2,000 to another boat or property; or injuries that need treatment beyond first aid, you must report the accident immediately.
Reporting the accident is vital for numerous reasons, including avoiding penalties and preserving your right to pursue a Palm Beach Gardens boating accident claim.
Contact a Florida Boating Accident Lawyer
Pursuing a boating accident claim can be complicated. After seeking initial medical treatment, your next phone call should be to an experienced attorney who can help you fight for the compensation you deserve. If you were injured in a Florida boating accident, contact Smith & Ball Injury Law today to schedule an initial consultation.