While boating is a year-round activity here in South Florida, summer will
see even more boaters hitting the water. From cruise ships to catamarans;
Florida is home to some of the nation’s best boating spots—and
for good reason. Florida has over 600 miles of sandy beaches and 1,200
miles of breathtaking coastline. Throw in the more than 11,000 miles of
rivers, streams, and waterways and 7,700 lakes, and you have a recipe
for some incredible boating adventures.
Florida is home to more than 900,000 boats, from large fishing vessels
to sailboats. Yet while boating can be a relaxing and wonderful way to
enjoy the sun and water, it can also be dangerous—especially when
the proper safety precautions are not taken. Every year more than 4,500
boating accidents occur, leading to hundreds of deaths and numerous injuries.
In order to stay safe this summer, safety experts urge everyone to take
the following precautions when boating:
- Never drink alcohol while operating a boat. The sun can intensify the effects
of alcohol, and be sure your passengers are not drinking too much. Alcohol
is responsible for 17% of all boating deaths.
- Have passengers wear a life jacket—even if they can swim. Dangerous
currents and undertow can pull even the best swimmers under. To prevent
drowning accidents, have all passengers wear a life jacket. In fact, 84%
of drowning victims were not wearing a life jacket at the time.
- Do not speed. Just like automobiles, boaters need to use safe speeds for
the occasion. Especially in crowded marinas or in areas where swimmers
are present, be sure you are using a safe speed, so you can maneuver easily
to avoid accidents.
Pay attention. Distracted driving is a serious issue. Boat operators who
are playing with smartphones, texting, or performing other tasks while
driving may inadvertently hit a sandbank, another vessel, or a swimmer
in the water.
Contact South Florida Accident Attorneys
For decades, the accident attorneys at Kelley/Uustal have been successfully
fighting for the rights of injured
boating accident victims in Fort Lauderdale, Miami, Palm Beach, and throughout Broward
County. To learn more about your legal options, call our Broward County
accident attorneys at
(954) 715-4511 or
888-522-6601 for a free consultation.