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Boating Accidents: A Major Problem in Miami Area

When Miami area residents want to relax and enjoy the wonderful, sunny Florida climate, they often go boating. And why not? The ocean is right there for everyone to enjoy. Boaters can have fun with watersports, fishing, or just floating along while enjoying time with family and friends. But unfortunately, boating occasionally doesn’t turn out this way. All too often Miami area residents out for a pleasant boating trip are involved in horrific, life-changing accidents.

But how often does that happen? And when it does, who is responsible? Below is a discussion that helps to answer these questions. If you enjoy boating in the Miami area, it’s important that you are aware of the dangers boating accidents present.

News Story Reveals Growing Problem of Boating Accidents

A recent news story in the Miami New Times revealed the stunning details of how big a problem boating accidents are in the Miami area. Not surprisingly, the story’s researchers conclude that more boating accidents happen in the Miami-Dade area than any other in Florida. What may surprise you, however, are how many accidents there are. It was reported that in 2014 in the Miami area:

  • A Fourth of July weekend accident claimed four lives;
  • A local DJ sponsored a party boat that got stuck in the sandbar; a person was killed by the rotor trying to loosen the boat; and
  • 79 total accidents occurred in the Miami-Dade area with 10 dead and 47 injured.

These numbers are incredible, and reveal just how dangerous boating can be. And it is not just a Miami-area problem. In fact, there were 634 boating accidents that caused over 70 deaths.

What is the primary cause of all these Miami area boating accidents? Operator inexperience. That means that the boat operators did not know what they were doing, and on far too many occasions the operators literally took their passengers’ lives into their own hands. Of course, there were some incidents where weather or mechanical issues led to an accident, but the majority of accidents could have been prevented.

Law on Boating Accidents

There are several different areas of law that regulate boating accidents, the primary being personal injury law. When a boat operator captains a ship, he or she takes on several responsibilities. Much like someone driving a car, a boat operator owes a duty to his passengers and fellow boaters on the water to operate the boat reasonably, If he breaches that duty and causes an injury to fellow passengers or boaters, he will likely be held liable for his negligence. Liability includes being responsible for hospital bills, pain and suffering, job loss, and other injuries that are related to the accident. This is the basic framework of any other personal injury lawsuit.

And beyond personal injury there are other areas of law that may apply. For example, if the boat’s machinery was faulty then the manufacturer or distributor may be liable for the damage a faulty boat caused. Other areas of law may apply as well.

Our Attorneys Can Help

There are several important takeaways from this discussion. First, boating accidents in the Miami area are more common than any of us would like. Second, victims of boating accidents have laws that will protect them if injured. And third, the laws involved can be complex and far-reaching. At Alan Goldfarb, P.A. we are ready and able to help you. Contact us so we can evaluate your case.

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