Captain Charged in Florida Boat Accident
The captain of a boat has been charged with “failing to maintain a proper lookout” after their 55-foot vessel struck a jetty near Key West, Florida. The collision resulted in injuries to three of the six people onboard.
As reported by Keys News, an investigation into the accident conducted by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission resulted in the captain being charged. The three injured parties were taken to Lower Keys Medical Center on Monday, May 8, 2023, after their vessel hit a jetty in the Northwest Channel. The boat was allegedly on “auto-pilot” at the time of the crash. The group had been sailing from Marco Island before it veered off course.
What Are the Most Common Causes of Boat Accidents?
The majority of the time, boat accidents are caused by negligence or carelessness. Most of these accidents are preventable.
Common causes of boat accidents:
- Failing to maintain a proper lookout;
- Boating at night or in inclement weather;
- Failing to have proper lighting or other safety equipment;
- Equipment malfunctions; or
- Boating under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
Florida often leads the nation in boating accidents each year. According to the most recent data available, May was the worst month for boating accidents in the state, with over 100 reported.
What Are the Leading Types of Boat Accidents in Florida?
As noted by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission, collisions with another vessel or a fixed object are the leading types of reportable boating accidents in the state. These accidents can result in serious, potentially life-threatening injuries if the boat is traveling at a high rate of speed.
Leading types of reportable boat accidents in Florida:
- Collision with a vessel
- Collision with a fixed object
- Falls overboard
By far, the majority of boating accidents involve an open motorboat. The second most common vessel involved is a personal watercraft such as a jetski.
What to Do If You Are Involved in a Boating Accident in South Florida
If you are injured in a boating accident in Florida, you need to seek medical attention. Even if you are unsure whether you were seriously injured, you should be evaluated by a doctor. Many injuries may not be readily apparent in the hours and days after the collision. A prompt and accurate diagnosis can help ensure that you make a full recovery.
Boating accidents involving injuries must be reported to local authorities. If you were the operator of a vessel involved in the collision, you need to report the collision as soon as possible.
Once you are able, you need to consider consulting with an attorney. If you were injured due to another person’s negligence or wrongdoing, you might be entitled to compensation.
Contact Our Office to Learn More
At Mase Seitz Briggs, we represent individuals who have been seriously injured in boating accidents throughout South Florida. We are trained trial lawyers focused on obtaining the largest recovery possible for our clients. Contact our office today at (844) 627-3529 to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.