Boating Accidents

The beauty of the Florida waterways brings millions of tourists to the state every year. Those who live in the Miami and Ft. Lauderdale areas often choose boating as the ideal type of recreation. Unfortunately, these areas are also the location of many boating accidents, often leading to catastrophic injuries or loss of life. At Panzer Law, our legal team represents the injured in these cases and would like to speak with you about your injury case.

Types of Boating Accidents
The Coast Guard ranks Florida number one for recreational boating accidents in the USA.

A report issued by the agency reveals that in a recent year, there were 679 accidents with 62 fatalities. The top five types of boat accidents and injuries reported by the Coast Guard are as follows:

  • Open motorboats: 201 drownings, 87 other deaths, 288 total deaths, 1246 total injuries
  • Personal watercraft: 24 drownings, 22 other deaths, 56 total deaths, 614 total injuries
  • Cabin motorboat: 14 drownings, 20 other deaths, 34 total deaths, 248 total injuries
  • Canoes, kayaks: 107 drownings, 18 other deaths, 125 total deaths, 121 total injuries
  • Pontoon boats: 32 drownings, 8 other deaths, 40 total deaths, 153 total injuries

Top Causes of Boat Accidents in Florida
The Coast Guard also reports on the top ten primary contributing factors in boating accidents, which are listed as follows:

  • Operator inattention
  • Improper lookout
  • Operator inexperience
  • Excessive speed
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Machinery failure
  • Violations of navigation rules
  • Weather 
  • Hazardous water conditions
  • Force of a wave or wake

Who is Liable?
After a boating accident that led to serious injury or death, the question of liability arises. Boat operators are required to follow all regulations, but with thousands of tourists on the water, many of whom may be less experienced or consuming alcohol, even a very seasoned boat operator can be involved in an accident with tragic consequences. It is imperative that every detail of the accident is reviewed so that liability can be established. Evidence such as BAC (blood alcohol content), witness statements, and the condition of the damaged vessels must all be obtained in determining liability. The boat operator is controlling the vessel and is responsible for following all boating regulations.

If a boat operator failed to operate the vessel in a responsible manner or failed to provide a reasonable level of safety for the passengers, was intoxicated, or engaged in reckless boat operation, it is likely that he or she is liable. 

Hurt in a boating accident?

Common Boating Accident Injuries in Miami and Ft. Lauderdale
Accidents involving boats can lead to many serious or fatal injuries, including:

  • Traumatic brain injuries (lack of oxygen while submerged, or head trauma)
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Fractures
  • Amputations
  • Severe burns
  • Neck injuries
  • Concussions
  • Back injuries
  • Soft tissue damage
  • Internal injuries
  • Death by drowning 

Why Choose Panzer Law after a Boating Accident?
After being involved in a boating accident, many families are left devastated, with a loved one who is permanently disabled or facing a long recovery. At Panzer Law, we understand the stress, emotional upheaval, and tragedy of these cases, and we are deeply committed to the people we represent. The first step in seeking justice is a free case consultation, so we can find out more about what occurred. While we don’t take on every case, once we are your legal team, you can expect the full resources of our firm to be devoted to your case. 

What is My Case Worth?
The compensatory damages paid in a boating accident will be calculated based on the extent of the injuries and the long-term impact on the future of the injured person. A victim of a boating accident is entitled to seek compensation for several types of damages:

  • Economic damages: The economic losses associated with the injuries, including medical costs, medications, transportation, nursing, rehab, lost wages, predicted future financial losses, and other hard costs.
  • Non-economic damages: The personal losses experienced by the victim, including pain and suffering, loss of quality of life, loss of companionship, disfigurement, and others.

Panzer Law: Defenders of the Injured
At Panzer Law, we fight for the rights of the injured. We are committed to seeking the maximum compensation after a boating accident that left you or a loved one injured, in pain, unable to work, or permanently impaired. You have a right to seek a level of compensation that provides enough financial support to rebuild your life as much as possible. We take on boating accident cases on a contingency fee basis, with no legal fees unless we are successful. Our entire staff is compassionate and committed to working with you to achieve full justice.

Frequently Asked Questions