There are many rules of the water, and they’re all enacted to keep us safe and to keep boat traffic flowing smoothly. Unfortunately, despite those laws, one boater’s afternoon recently turned deadly in Collier County.
According to ABC7, a 61-year-old man was killed after the boat he was riding was slammed into a channel marker in Naples’ waters. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) said it happened in Dollar Bay, just before 8:00 p.m. at channel marker 71. Accident reports indicate that the accident was alcohol-related. Upon impact, the victim and his wife were ejected from the boat and sent 15 feet in the air.
“When our officers investigate the case, they’re going to look at all of the factors that were involved in the accident. And that certainly speed will be one of those,” said Carli Segelson with the FWC.
Our Naples boating accident lawyers understand that Florida has more than 8,000 miles of coastline and 4,500 square miles of inland waterways, making it a paradise for boaters! From mega-yachts to wooden skiffs, having a boat is as normal as having a car for some Floridians. Unfortunately, there are many risks associated with your leisurely days in the sun.
According to the FWC, the Sunshine State has the highest number of boating accidents in the nation, with approximately 25 percent more than the next following state. Collier is ranked ninth statewide for the highest number of annual accidents, most of which occur in open motorboats, cabin motorboats and personal watercraft.
Top 5 Causes of Boating Accidents:
The operator of a boat that’s involved in an accident where there is personal injury beyond immediate first-aid, death, disappearance of any person under circumstances which indicate death or injury or even if there is damage to the boat (or other boats) and/or there is personal property of at least $2,000, is responsible to give notice to one of the following:
-The sheriff of the county.
-The police chief of the municipality.
Boating Accident Statistics:
-Most of the people who die in boating accidents die from drowning.
-About 80 percent of these victims were not using a life jacket at the time of the accident.
-Close to three-quarters of these victims who drowned were in boats under 21 feet in length.
-Alcohol is a contributing factor in more than 15 percent of fatal boating accidents in the country.
With the summer season, we can expect a lot of Floridians and visitors to hit our waterways — especially on weekends. It only takes one wrong move, one bad decision or one second of inattention for a fatal accident to happen. It’s critical that we keep safety as a number one priority to help make sure that everyone safely enjoys their day under that Florida sun.
Associates and Bruce L. Scheiner, Attorneys for the Injured, is a law firm dedicated to helping accident victims. Call us today for a free and confidential consultation to discuss your case. 1-800-283-2900.
More Blog Entries:
Boaters Beware: Accident Risks on the Rise in Southwest Florida, Florida Injury Lawyer Blog, March 20, 2013
Lee County: 5th Most Dangerous in State for Boating Accidents, Florida Injury Lawyer Blog, October 31, 2012