Boat Accident Lawyer in Stuart, Florida
Dedicated injury attorney in the Treasure Coast
The state of Florida has close to a million registered boats and watercraft – more than any other state. Close to a million unregistered vessels also are located in the state. This likely explains why the state of Florida tops the list for the highest number of boating accidents in the country, with roughly 7,000 per year. Not surprisingly, Florida also ranks first among states for deaths due to boating accidents each year. When you've been hurt due to another boater's negligence, you need a compassionate boat accident attorney in Stuart like Leanne L. Ohle who will fight for every penny on your behalf.
Some common injuries resulting from boating accidents include:
- broken bones
- head injuries
- back injuries
- neck injuries
Other more serious injuries such as amputations, internal injuries, spinal injuries or burns often are the result after what began as a pleasant day on the water. Florida laws regarding boating and other watercraft, such as a Jet Skis, can be extremely complex. The Stuart boat accident lawyers at Leanne L. Ohle use their extensive 50+ years of experience and knowledge of these laws to evaluate your case. They conduct a complete investigation to help seek just compensation for medical bills, time lost from work and other monetary entitlements.
By the numbers
Statistics show that Stuart boating accidents are more common in spring and summer months. In Florida, 104 boating accidents occurred during the month of May. Another 97 accidents took place in July. The experienced personal injury attorneys at Leanne L. Ohle, P.A. help protect the legal rights of boat accident victims throughout the Treasure Coast. Boats can be dangerous, whether they are used for work or leisure. Florida law enforcement officers cited more than 14,000 boat operators for violations this year.
Many people believe boating accidents occur more frequently when a boat is traveling at a high rate of speed during a race or while towing a water skier. However, in more than 78% of boating accidents, the party in a boat or watercraft accident who is found at fault simply wasn't paying attention or failed to conduct a proper "look-out."
The risk of being involved in boating accident in Florida is high. The experienced Stuart boating accident lawyers at Leanne L. Ohle, P.A. help protect the legal rights of boating accident victims in Stuart and throughout the Treasure Coast of Florida.
BOATING ACCIDENT FAQs
What are the leading causes of boat accidents?
Among recreational boaters, operator inexperience causes the most accidents. This can take the form of failing to maintain a forward look out, speeding and other reckless actions. Alcohol use sometimes intersects with inexperience to create a situation that could end up with a boat striking another vessel, personal watercraft, dock or swimmer. Striking another object can sometimes cause people to fall overboard, which can result in serious injury. Machinery failure contributes to many boating accidents as well. Although a breakdown does not always amount to negligence, it could place the operator at fault for your injuries if the person or rental company did not perform routine maintenance.
Is boating under the influence a crime in Florida?
Just as operating a car or truck under the influence of alcohol or drugs is a criminal offense, boating under the influence calls for criminal prosecution. Boat operators in Stuart or Fort Pierce might not assign the same level of importance to sobriety on the water as on the road, but the law makes no distinction. A criminal conviction for BUI is possible when drugs or alcohol impair a boat operator's normal motor skills and judgment or a test reveals a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 percent or higher. A second-degree misdemeanor results from the first offense. An injury victim seeking compensation from a boat operator convicted of BUI may use this criminal record as evidence of negligence.
How do I report a boating accident near me?
According to State law, you need to alert the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Division of Law Enforcement or local law enforcement about a boating accident under certain conditions. The report is mandatory when a person dies, a person disappears because of likely injury or death, an injured person needs medical care other than first aid, property is damaged in excess of $1,999 or a vessel is destroyed. Boat operators also have a legal obligation to stay at the accident scene and provide aid to everyone involved. Fatal accidents require the completion of an accident report within 48 hours. Otherwise, people get 10 days to report a boating accident.