Clearwater is famous for its crystal blue waters and fine white sand. With its beautiful beaches and harbors, it’s no wonder that boating is so popular for residents and tourists alike.
Each year, thousands of people in Florida enjoy boats, jet skis, sailboats, yachts, speed boats, and more. However, with this comes potential dangers, and when boating accidents occur, they can be lethal. If people are negligent in the maintenance of their boat, or someone drives it while under the influence or without the proper training, then they may be found negligent.
According to the Coast Guard Report, Florida has the highest number of boating accidents in the United States. Boating accidents in Clearwater and throughout Florida have led to hundreds of injuries and preventable deaths. Therefore, our Florida law firm is experienced and well equipped to fight alongside you to seek justice for a boating accident.
At The Law Place, we understand how a serious boat accident can be life-changing. Beyond physical injuries or loss of loved ones, there is also the potential for emotional trauma. Our personal injury lawyers have over 75 years of combined experience with the Florida legal system and will give you the best chance at receiving the compensation that you deserve.
Phone us today on (941) 444-4444 to book a free consultation with a boating accident lawyer.
Common Causes of Boating Accidents in Clearwater, FL
When people participate in boating activities, they must follow admiral and maritime laws, which are similar to those you obey while driving on the road. The laws are designed to protect people from any potential hazards. However, unfortunately, accidents often occur because these laws are not followed correctly, or are ignored.
Some common reasons for boating accidents in Clearwater and throughout Florida are:
- Negligence – Boat owners and people operating boats have a duty of care to keep those around them safe. If they breach this duty of care, then they can be found negligent. Examples of negligence in boating accident cases include overloading the vessel and hitting a big wave at an excessive speed.
- Excessive speed – It is essential that boat operators and jet skiers maintain a safe speed at all times. When moving at high speed, it is common for even the most experienced boat operators to lose control.
- Alcohol use – In accordance with Florida Statute 327.35, it is illegal to operate a vessel while under the influence of anything that could be impairing your judgment, including alcohol and illegal and prescription drugs. When under the influence, your decision making is irrational, and your reaction times are slowed, which makes it incredibly dangerous to operating a boat.
- Inexperience – Operating and controlling boats can be very difficult, and yet it is common for people to attempt it with little to no training. If someone attempts to operate a boat without the necessary skill or experience, then this could lead to a boating accident.
- Poor weather conditions – High winds or heavy rain can make waters very dangerous, and it can be risky to go out into the ocean in these conditions, especially if the operator is inexperienced. If an operator chooses to go out in poor weather conditions, they put themselves, their passengers, and other boaters at risk.
These examples are not extensive; there are many reasons why boating accidents occur. Regardless of the reason, if you or a loved one has suffered an injury in a boating accident, then you deserve compensation for your pain and suffering. Contact The Law Place today for a free consultation with an experienced lawyer who will establish whether they think you have a valid claim.
Types of Boating Accidents in Clearwater, FL
No matter cause or severity of the boating accident in Clearwater, The Law Place can offer a free case evaluation. Our personal injury lawyer has over 75 years of combined experience dealing with Florida law.
The most common causes of boating accidents include, but are not limited to:
- Overboard accident – If someone falls overboard, then the impact could lead to serious injuries. If they cannot swim, or the water conditions are hazardous, then this could lead to drowning.
- Drowning accident – Whenever you get on a boat, you run the risk of ending up in the water, sometimes unexpectedly. If someone cannot swim, there is a lack of life jackets, or the conditions of the sea are dangerous, then drowning accidents could occur. Even the strongest swimmer could drown if the conditions are dangerous, such as if the current is strong or the weather is bad.
- Propeller accident – The propellers attached to boats can be incredibly dangerous. The sharp blades rapidly spin and can cause serious injuries including, dismemberment, and internal injuries. They pose a hazard to those in the water, as well as people using the boat.
- Crew member accident – The nature of the work and equipment used on boats is often dangerous, particularly if crew members have received insufficient training or equipment is not properly maintained.
- Slips – The floor of boats is bound to get wet, and this can make it slippery. If boat owners and workers do not keep their decks and other floor surfaces maintained, then it could lead to injuries.
- Run over accident – Swimmers could suffer traumatic or lethal injuries if they are run over by a boat.
Frequent Injuries Caused by a Boating Accident in Clearwater
Boating accidents can result in serious injuries and even death. Jet-skis can be particularly dangerous because of how exposed the rider is.
Here are some common injuries that are sustained by boating accidents:
- Brain and head trauma.
- Spinal cord injuries.
- Lacerations, cuts, and bruises.
- Broken bones and fractures.
- Wrongful death.
If you have been involved in a boating accident and have experienced an injury or damage to your property, then you may be entitled to compensation. Contact The Law Place today.
Common Damages in Florida
A boating accident in Clearwater has the potential to change the course of your life. It isn’t justifiable that you should have to suffer through the financial stresses of an injury that wasn’t your fault. That is why you need a personal injury lawyer ready to batter the legal system and win you the compensation that you deserve.
Common damages our law firm will help you to claim for following an injury are:
- Medical bills – Following a boating accident in Clearwater, you may have been left with injuries that required extensive and long-lasting medical treatment. You could be entitled to compensation for past and future medical bills and any other related expenses, such as transport to and from appointments and any adjustments that may need to be made to your home.
- Lost wages – If you sustained an injury in the accident that has prevented you from working, then you could be entitled to your lost wages. You may also be entitled to any future loss of wages or lost earning potential if you are unable to do the job you once did.
- Property damage – If your property, perhaps your boat, or your be,l.ongings such as a phone, was damaged in the accident, then you may be able to claim for compensation to repair or replace it.
- Pain and suffering – If you are suffering emotionally following the accident or are left with pain, then you could claim pain and suffering damages. These are designed to compensate for things such as trauma and loss of enjoyment if you are left unable to do things that you once did. These are not easily quantifiable, and you may need the help of a lawyer in order to successfully make a claim.
- Wrongful death – If you lost a loved one in the accident, then we may be able to help you to claim compensation to cover funeral costs and loss of income to a family household.
If you or a loved one have been injured in a boating accident, in Tampa, Sarasota, or elsewhere in Florida, then you may deserve financial compensation. By calling us today to book a free case evaluation, you will be ensuring that an experienced Tampa boating accident lawyer will review your claim with no cost or obligation. If you think you deserve compensation, then don’t wait; act on it today.
How to Avoid a Boating Accident in Clearwater, FL
Boating accidents can happen because of unforeseen circumstances and can sometimes be unavoidable. However, boat owners and operators should take steps to keep everyone safe. If you believe that an accident was caused by the negligence of another party, then you should seek damages. Not only do you deserve compensation, but when you hold those responsible accountable, it may prevent similar accidents occurring in the future. If you are unsure, you can contact us for a free consultation and seek some advice.
Here are some reasonable steps that boat owners and operators should take to keep people safe:
- Stay sober.
- Regularly check the weather forecast and do not attempt to go out in bad weather.
- Take a course on boating safety.
- Keep a fire extinguisher on the boat in easy reach.
- Ensure there are enough floatation devices for every passenger on board.
- Maintain the upkeep of the boat and make sure there are no issues.
The Law Place
Unfortunately, boating accidents are common throughout Florida. We believe that by holding those responsible for accidents accountable, we are working to make Florida a safer state to enjoy its beautiful waters.
If you or a loved one has suffered a boating accident in Florida, then get in touch with The Law Place today. We will give you the best chance of winning your claim by helping you to navigate the legal system, collecting evidence, determining fault, and fighting for the right damage, securing you the maximum compensation.
Still unsure? Contact us for a free consultation with no obligation. Get all of the information you need before you commit to representation.
Contact us today on (941) 444-4444.