Miami’s abundant waterways and coastline provide infinite opportunities for water activities and recreation, but they offer dangers, too. Florida had more than 950,000 vessels registered in 2018, which was the highest in the US. In the same year, 59 were killed, and 307 were injured in boating accidents in Florida.
Boat accidents can cause severe injuries, including paralysis, brain trauma, and spinal cord injuries, sometimes even drowning and death. Here, you will come to know about different types of boat accidents that need immediate legal help from a Miami boat accident lawyer.
Causes of Boat Accidents
Boating accidents like drowning, collisions, and others may occur for several reasons, including unfavorable weather or water conditions, driver error or inexperience, driver impairment or intoxication, poor vessel maintenance, equipment failure or defects, poor planning, etc.
The boat owner and operator are responsible for passengers’ and swimmers’ safety. This applies to all types of boats, including ferries, powerboats, cruise ships, canoes, kayaks, jet skis, sailboats, etc. They must follow boating rules and regulations and take proper precautions to avoid any injuries and accidents. It is their responsibility to maintain the vessel and carry appropriate safety gear and equipment to keep everyone safe.
If they violate any laws, they are liable to compensate the victim for their injury or loss.
Types of Boating Accidents in Miami
Some common types of boating accidents reported in Miami include:
Hitting a Vessel’s Wake: You must have seen waves generating behind the vessel as they move forward. These are called wakes. The wakes’ size depends on the vessel’s speed and size. Hitting a large wake or moving too close to one from a wrong angle can cause a vessel to overturn.
Collision with Other Vessels: As already mentioned, Florida has the highest number of vessels registered in the US. So, it’s no surprise that the waterways stay overcrowded, and there is a high risk of vessels colliding with each other.
Colliding with a Fixed Object: Besides other boats, the operator must avoid fixed objects in Miami waters to prevent boat accidents. These may include anything from buoys and channel marks to harbors and sandbanks. Collision with a fixed object may toss or throw the passengers overboard.
Waves Hitting the Vessel: Depending on its height and size, a wave can swamp or overturn a vessel, due to which it may sink and lead to severe consequences.
Inadequate Safety Measures: Miami vessels are legally required to carry proper safety equipment on board, including fire extinguishers, visual distress signals, adequate lights, proper ventilation, personal flotation device approved by the coast guard, sound-producing equipment, etc. Lack of suitable protection equipment enhances the risk of aggravated injuries and crashes.
Other types of boat accidents include:
- Excessive speed
- Colliding with submerged objects
- Fire or explosion
- Mishaps due to towable devices
- Sinking or capsizing
- Running aground
- Poisoning from carbon monoxide due to boat exhausts or faulty systems
Depending upon the boat accident circumstances, you are eligible for a personal injury claim and compensation. Speak with a reliable Miami boat accident lawyer who can identify the parties liable for your accident and help you through the legal process of filing a claim and getting the deserved compensation.