Earlier this month in Key Biscayne, Florida, two individuals were injured and one was killed in a boating accident. According to a local news article, a 68-foot yacht crashed into a 27-foot smaller watercraft.
A 29-year-old woman was killed due to injuries from the crash, and a 33-year-old and 23-year-old were severely injured. The injured parties were rushed to Mercy Hospital and Jackson Memorial’s Ryder Trauma Center. Unfortunately, both the survivors are currently in critical condition.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is attempting to determine the exact nature of the crash, and specifically, if the driver of the yacht was under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of the crash. The Commission spokesperson indicated that the driver originally exhibited some signs of impairment. The investigation is ongoing at the present time.
Florida Boating Laws
Florida is one of the premier spots for boating and fishing in the country. Unfortunately, with that comes a significant number of injuries as a result of boating and drinking. Florida has a series of “BUI” laws that dictate the legal blood alcohol concentration (BAC) allowed to operate a boat and the repercussions of a violation of the law.
Under Florida law, individuals are not allowed to drink while they are in operation of a boat, but it is not illegal to drink alcohol before operating a boat. An individual can be charged with a BUI in Florida if his or her BAC is .08% or higher. Furthermore, you can be charged if an officer believes that you are impaired because of alcohol or drug consumption.
In the above case, it is unclear whether the individual was impaired, but if law enforcement can establish that, it will be easier for the victims and their families to bring a negligence suit against the other boater.
Personal Injury After Boating Accident
In order to pursue a claim for injuries as a result of a boating accident, it would be beneficial to be able to establish that the other individual’s BAC was .08% or higher. This would be considered “negligence per se.” However, individuals can still bring a claim if they can prove basic negligence. This means that the victim would have to establish that the other party owed him or her a duty, the other party breached that duty, and the victim’s injuries and damages were a direct and proximate cause of the breach of duty. If you are able to prove these elements, you may be entitled to compensatory damages.
Have You Been Injured in a Boating Accident?
If you or a loved one has been injured in a boating accident in Florida, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries and losses. If the other party is found to be negligent, you could be eligible to receive compensation for your past medical bills, recurring medical expenses, and any pain and suffering that you incurred as a result of the injury. Please call one of our dedicated and experienced personal injury attorneys today at 352-387-8700 to set up a free initial consultation.
More Blog Posts:
Florida Helicopter Crash Results in $16 Million Verdict, Ocala Injury Lawyers Blog, published October 3, 2014.
Tampa City Truck Driver Kills Toddler in Accident, Ocala Injury Lawyers Blog, published September 12, 2014.