Set on the idyllic Manatee River, Bradenton is a city with a large boating community. With increasing numbers of people taking to the water every day, it comes as no surprise that the risk of accident and injury is increasing. Many people misjudge the risks and dangers associated with boating and therefore take to the waters with very little experience. As a result, many boating accidents occur in Florida each year. As noted on the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission website, Florida has the highest number of boating accidents in the United States.
If you or a loved one has sustained property damage or personal injury from a boating accident that wasn’t your fault, then you may be entitled to compensation. At The Law Place, our team of adept personal injury lawyers has an abundance of experience in representing clients in court and working their best to ensure they receive the compensation they are deserving of. At our law firm, we understand just how devastating and traumatic a boating accident can be, which is why our personal injury attorneys will be there to support you every step of the way. We will fight on your behalf to ensure you receive the best possible outcome.
Our Bradenton phone lines are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, so you can call us at any time of day, and rest assured, a skilled Bradenton boat accident attorney will be on hand to offer support and legal advice. Call us today and get started with your case today.
Common Causes of Boating Accidents in Bradenton, FL.
Similar to the duty of care expected from every driver when taking to the road, when taking to the water, boaters are expected to act in line with the Admiralty and Maritime Laws. These laws govern nautical issues and are intended to protect the safety of boat operators, passengers, and those in the surrounding areas. Unfortunately, when these issues are breached, accidents occur. Some of the most common causes of accidents are as follows:
- Driver negligence – This is one of the most common causes of boat accidents in Bradenton, occurring when drivers are careless and not acting with the duty of care that is expected of them.
- Boating under the influence of alcohol or drugs (BUI) – In contrast to driving on the roads, it is not actually illegal to consume alcohol or drugs whilst operating a boat. However, as highlighted in Florida Statute 327.35, if the operator of the boat was found to be over the legal limit of 0.08% or was clearly overtly intoxicated at the time of the accident, then it is possible for them to be charged with a BUI.
- Speeding – It is essential for boat operators to maintain a steady and controllable speed. When this is disobeyed, the vessel is increasingly likely to spin out of control, and as a result, accidents are more likely to occur.
- Company negligence – Unfortunately, companies that rent out boats to tourists are normally focused on making money, and so, sometimes, the maintenance and care for their vessels get neglected. When this happens, the chances of an accident occurring increases greatly.
- Defective parts – Many boating accidents occur due to defective vessel parts or when parts are not maintained correctly.
- Inexperienced operators – Many people underestimate the complexity of operating a boat. If the operator of the vessel does not have enough skill or practice, then the risk of a boating accident occurring is increasingly likely.
- Poor weather conditions – When the weather is bad, the open waters can become a dangerous and treacherous place. Boating in poor weather conditions poses not only a risk to yourself and the passengers on the boat but also to other boaters too.
No matter the cause of the boating accident, if it wasn’t your fault, then it is likely that you will be entitled to compensation. Here at The Law Place, we have a team of highly skilled boating accident attorneys with an abundance of experience in handling cases similar to yours. Our accident attorneys will be there to support you throughout the legal process and ensure you receive the compensation you are deserving of.
What Are the Most Common Injuries Sustained From a Boating Accident?
Depending on the severity of the incident, boating accidents can lead to serious personal injury and severe property damage, which can have potentially life-changing effects. Some of the most common injuries sustained as a result of a boating accident are as follows:
- Cuts, lacerations, and bruises.
- Head or neck trauma.
- Injuries to the spinal cord or back.
- Fractured or broken bones.
- Wrongful death.
In addition to physical injuries, boating accidents can cause immense emotional distress and trauma, which in legal terms is known as pain and suffering. In other words, if the boating accident has prevented you from living the life you once lived, then it is likely that you may be entitled to compensation.
What Damages Can I Claim After a Boating Accident in Bradenton, FL?
As with any vessel collision, there are a number of damages that you may be able to claim compensation for. Depending on the circumstances surrounding the boating accident, you may be entitled to claim for any of the following damages:
- Medical bills from the past, present, or future – If the boating accident has resulted in personal injury that requires medical assistance, then you may be able to claim compensation for any medical costs you have incurred. This includes costs incurred from traveling to and from appointments.
- Loss of income – If you were unable to return to work due to injuries sustained as a result of the boating accident, then you may be entitled to claim for any loss of income.
- Property damage – If your boat, or any personal belongings such as your phone, were damaged as a result of the boating accident, then you may be deserving of compensation to cover the cost of repairs.
- Pain and suffering – If the boating accident has left you with emotional distress that is preventing you from living the life you lived before the accident, then you may be able to claim compensation for this.
- Wrongful death – If you have lost a loved one from the boating accident, then you may be able to claim compensation that covers funeral costs, loss of companionship and income, as well as loss of consortium.
Boating Accidents and Negligence
As with any personal injury claim, it is very important to establish the liable and negligent party. Florida statute 768.81 defines negligence as the failure to act with the expected duty of care. In order to gain compensation for any personal injury or damage caused by the boating injury, you will be required to establish that another party was negligent and therefore responsible for the accident and any damage and injury caused. In Florida, there are a number of factors that are taken into consideration when establishing liability. These include:
- The legal requirement to act with a duty of care.
- The breach of this duty of care.
- Any damage and injury suffered by the victim.
- The connection between the actions of the defendant and the damage and injury caused.
Contact The Law Place Today!
If you have suffered injury and damage as a result of a boating accident that wasn’t your fault, then you may be entitled to compensation. As noted under Florida Statute 95.11, the Statute of Limitations allows up to 4 years from the date of the accident to file a personal injury lawsuit. However, if the accident resulted in wrongful death, then the Statute of Limitations is reduced to 2 years. Whilst you have a relatively long period of time in which to file a lawsuit, at The Law Place, we strongly believe that the sooner you start your claim, the greater your chances of achieving a successful outcome.
At our law firm, we have a team of highly skilled Bradenton boat accident attorneys who are highly knowledgeable in dealing with cases like yours. Between us, our attorneys have over 75 years of experience in dealing with the Florida legal system, so you can rest assured that at The Law Place, your case will be in competent and knowledgeable hands. We offer all our customers a free consultation where an adept personal injury lawyer will assess the intricacies of your case. At this consultation, we will also offer valuable legal advice on the best steps to take in order to achieve a successful outcome.
It is worthwhile noting that many of our accident attorneys are AVVO rated 10.0, which is the highest possible rating. This rating is awarded to an attorney based on their trial skills, length of service, and any awards they may have received, as well as client reviews and testimonials. Our Bradenton phone lines are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, so you can call us at a time that suits you best, and rest assured, a skilled accident attorney will be on hand to help. Call us and arrange a free consultation with an adept personal injury lawyer today.