Articles Tagged with watercraft accidents

Parasailing and personal watercraft rentals are in the news after the developers of the Margaritaville resort asked Fort Myers Beach officials to expand the number of available licenses. hospital-300x225

Opposition is coming from current operators of parasailing and personal watercraft rentals on the beach, citing increased competition and the potential for more safety issues. The town has limited the number of operators since 1995, following restrictions enacted by Lee County in the wake of a number of safety issues. Current operators are pushing to force the resort developers to purchase licenses from an existing operator, which the resort said would cost more than some real estate on the beach and would be cost prohibitive. One estimate put the cost of a license at more than $1 million.

The referenced Lee County Ordinances and Fort Myers Beach ordinances primarily aim to restrict areas in which rental craft and other personal watercraft can be operated along the shoreline, and to ensure such businesses are properly registered so that the county can collect business taxes. Ordinances also require both personal watercraft and parasailing businesses to carry liability insurance, although there is no mechanism in place to ensure compliance. Continue reading ›

The death of an Ohio woman in a personal watercraft accident on Fort Myers Beach highlights the risk of injury to tourists both in and out of the water.

With all of us facing  the stress of the coronavirus pandemic, it is particularly disheartening to hear of serious or fatal injury occurring to those who have sought a brief escape along Southwest Florida’s coastline. Many businesses are suffering from pandemic-related economic losses and the lack of tourism traffic. It’s important that we all do our part to make the area a welcoming safe-haven from the stresses of everyday life.


The Fort Myers Beach Observer reports the fatal watercraft accident occurred while the woman was on a rented craft near the Fort Myers Beach Pier. The Fort Myers Beach Fire Department, Lee County Sheriff’s Office and the U.S. Coast Guard all responded to the scene. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission reports the woman was a passenger on a rented watercraft when she was thrown during an attempted turn. Staff from the rental company arrived on scene and attempted life-saving efforts, according to FWC.

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