Deerfield Beach Boating Accident Lawyer
Boating Accident Lawyer in Deerfield Beach, FL
According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, there were 679 boating accidents in Florida in 2020, which is more than the next three states combined. This led to a record-setting 534 injuries and 54 deaths on Florida waters. Due to the size of the vessels, the speeds they go, and the unpredictable nature of water, boating accidents are particularly dangerous. The most common injuries are lacerations, broken bones, and contusions; over half of the deaths occurred as a result of drowning.
At Waring Law, we always suggest that you and anyone with you should be wearing a life vest any time you go out on the water. Every year there are hundreds of injuries on lakes and shore lines that result from boater negligence. An incident can be caused by boating under the influence, an inexperienced boat operator, or someone creating large wakes because they were speeding.
Understanding Florida Boating Laws
There are laws that all Floridians and visitors must follow when operating their boats. Not every law is strict, and in some cases the laws are vague. When the laws are broken and accidents occur, victims are entitled to receive compensation for their injuries and/or losses. Waring Law is ready to help you and present the options available to you. Here is important information to keep in mind:
- The Law mandates children ages 6 and younger must wear a United States Coast Guard-approved Type I, II, or III personal floatation device at all times while on a vessel under 26 feet in length. Every person using a Personal Water Craft (a.k.a. a jetski). Finally any person that’s towed behind a vessel must wear a USCG-approved personal floatation device.
- Adults are not required to be onboard when a vessel is operated by a minor.
- Florida does not require mandatory boat operator licensing.
- There is no minimum age requirement to certify boaters, except for operating a jet ski – which is 14 years of age.
- Finally, Florida has a mandatory boating safety education program for operators of motor vessels powered with 10 horsepower or more who are 21 years of age or younger. Older people, and those operating unpowered vessels are not required to take this course.
How is Boating Under the Influence Defined in Florida?
Drunk boating is as frowned upon as drunk driving. Operating any vessel or personal watercraft while intoxicated on alcohol or drugs is against the law in Florida. Any person found to have exceeded the legal limit of alcohol will be arrested and charged with Boating Under the Influence (BUI). A person can expect to pay expensive fines and fees, and could face prison time.
The basics of Florida’s BUI laws include the following:
- Minimum blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level for boaters 21 and older has to be at 0.08 percent
- Minimum BAC for minors—those under 21—is 0.02 percent
- Florida law allows for blood, urine, and breath tests to determine if a boater is intoxicated.
- Water skiing while intoxicated is also prohibited. Skiing too close to another person, vessel, fixed objects, or engaging in hazardous conditions are prohibited.
Contact a Deerfield Beach Boat Accident Attorney Today
If you or a loved one has been hurt in a boating accident, it’s crucial that you have the confidence that comes with having a knowledgeable and experienced personal injury legal team to help you and discuss your claim.
The sooner you contact a reputable personal injury lawyer, the sooner you can recover damages and help your family heal. At Waring Law, we provide free consultations, both in person and over the phone. Please contact us today at (954) 388-8943 or fill out our contact form to get the ball rolling on your case. We look forward to working with you to resolve your legal issues quickly and effectively.
About Matthew Waring
Founding attorney, Matthew Waring, has helped his clients recover millions of dollars for accident-related injuries across South Florida. Matthew Waring started his own firm after working for two of Florida’s largest trial law firms because he saw a different vision for how legal services should be delivered.
Sometimes you can sit on your hands, do nothing, and the world will provide you with the justice you deserve.