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Boating Accidents

Yachting and Boating accidents often occur due to negligence and can result in serious or deadly injuries. Boating accidents range from the involvement of small boats, yachts, large cruise ships, navy vessels or maritime. Florida has more boat accidents each year than other states. Maritime accidents often occur largely because of underestimating the dangers of watercraft or simply not understanding the nautical rules and safety laws.

Boat operators, boat owners, rental and sales companies as well as manufacturers of the boat, or its components are among the parties that could be held liable in a boating accident case.


Under Florida boating regulations, vessel operators have duties to operate vessels in a manner with regard for other vessel traffic, posted restrictions, the presence of a divers-down flag and other circumstances to ensure the safety of other boaters, guests and property. Failure to adhere to these requirements may be considered negligence. 


A boating accident is frightening, boating accidents are especially dangerous since the threat of drowning exists. After a boating accident has occurred, a thorough investigation and evaluation of its causes by an experienced legal counsel is advised. 


In a boating negligence suit, your attorney will have to show that the other party owed you some duty of care as well as the duty of care was breached through act or omission, an injury was sustained, and the breach was a direct cause of your injury.


  • Extensive researching of the history of the vessel and similar accidents in the area
  • Reviewing the vessel operator's driving history and credentials when applicable
  • Reviewing relevant sections in the applicable laws
  • Researching case law for similar instances to support the case
  • Investigating the scene of the accident or photographs
  • Interviewing any witnesses to gather numerous perspectives to compose a well adjusted account of the incident
  • Reviewing medical records and documentation of injuries
  • Consulting expert witness(es) to gain additional insight into potential causes or other information related to the claim


The most common causes of boating accidents are collisions. Other injuries such as slip and falls, reckless driving, drunk driving and boat malfunctions as well as inexperienced water craft operators.


Attorney Chris Keith is well versed in maritime law. And in addition to boating, other water sports such as swimming, water skiing jet skiing, diving and fishing are popular recreational activities. The potential for danger in these activities are plenty, especially when someone is inexperienced or intoxicated. In many cases of recreational activities, waivers are signed and can complicate an injured participants ability to file a claim against the negligent party for losses. Waivers however do not always bar an accident victim from seeking compensation. If a waiver is signed with the expectation that the company will fulfill its duty of care - its obligation to provide a safe environment for recreational activities and equipment, and the company fails to do so, a lawsuit may not be precluded. A signed waiver may be void if a plaintiff proves that they did not receive adequate safety instructions as required by law prior to commencement of activity.

 ‚ÄčAttorney Chris Keith

Serving the Palm Beaches, Broward and Martin County.

chriskeith@chriskeithlaw.com

(561) 544-1112

I help good people through difficult times.

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