When a yacht meets with an accident, it’s not just the passengers at risk; the crew is equally at risk. In the event of such an unfortunate accident in Miami boating accident lawyers will help you make the right decisions. With inexperienced persons at the wheel (you don’t need a boating license), danger lurks in the waters.
Accident Prone Miami
It is no wonder that Florida leads the nation in boating accidents per the Coast Guard ranking reported in the Miami Herald. Not to worry, because the Miami Beach police are fully geared with the newest addition to their fleet – a Hi-Tech boat. However, despite all this, yacht accidents do happen, and it is better to be safe than sorry. According to a Coast Guard statistics report, there were 679 boat accidents in Florida, and 62 deaths were reported.
Yachting is no longer restricted to the “rich and famous” (the most expensive yacht docked in Miami is the $545M Luna). Today, an average individual can afford to go yachting in the clear blue waters on a sunny afternoon. However, danger still lurks, and you can’t rule out accidents. In Miami, boating accident lawyers know that some of the injuries one sustains in a boating accident are quite serious and will guide you to claim suitable compensation.
Risk Factors and Injuries
It has been reported that the common causes of boating accidents include collision with other boats, keeling or capsizing, slips and falls, falling overboard, heavy lifting injuries, and propeller strikes. The common injuries caused by boating accidents include broken bones, head and back injuries, brain damage, heavy lifting injuries, lacerations, and paralysis.
The compensation will depend on whether you are a passenger or a crew member, and the place of injury is also considered. If the accident happened due to the negligence of someone, you are entitled to claim compensation.
If you meet with an accident as a passenger in a yacht, you have the right to claim compensation. If the accident was caused due to the negligence of someone else, there are four points you need to prove:
- You were injured as a result of the accident
- The person causing the accident acted negligently
- There was a breach of duty on the person’s part
- The accident was a result of a breach of duty
To maintain a yacht, the owners need to hire many crew members whose responsibility is to operate the vessel. Law also protects the crew members, and they can claim compensation in case of an accident.
Maritime law stipulates that the owners of seagoing vessels have to ensure they are seaworthy, and they are considered to be unseaworthy if:
- There is not enough safety equipment aboard
- The vessel displays instability
- Unsanitary conditions prevail
- Procedures, rules, and regulations flouted
- Warning signs not displayed prominently
- Inadequate protective railings on the deck
- Untrained and incompetent crew members
- Noncompliance with federal maritime regulations
Crew members of any seagoing vessel can sue their employers, thanks to the Jones Act that gives them the right to sue their employers for negligence.
- Failure to heed weather warnings and sail in bad weather
- Failure to safely maintain equipment on board
- Hiring inexperienced and incompetent personnel
- Lack of adequate medical treatment
Crew members can claim lost wages, medical costs to treat injuries, and compensation for pain and suffering endured.
You never know when an exciting sailing trip can turn into a disaster because of someone else’s negligence. While there’s hardly anything you can do to predict such calamities, the least you can do is know whom to approach to claim compensation after a yachting accident.