Who’s Liable for Injuries on a Rented Boat in Florida?
Boat rentals are a popular activity among both Florida residents and tourists. They provide a unique opportunity to explore our waterways, but they can also pose a serious threat to passengers.
Even if the cause of an accident seems clear to you, determining liability for injuries from a rental boat can be hard to do. You’ll need a skilled boat accident attorney on your side. They can thoroughly investigate your case and work to hold the responsible party accountable.
What You Need to Bring Forward a Personal Injury Claim
Just because you sustained injuries on a rental boat does not mean you have a personal injury case. To recover damages, you must prove that another party acted negligently. To prove negligence, your Orlando personal injury attorney must show four things:
- The defendant owed a reasonable duty of care to passengers.
- They breached that duty of care by acting in a certain way.
- Their actions or inactions caused the plaintiff’s injuries.
- The plaintiff’s injuries were a direct result of how the defendant acted.
If your attorney can prove negligence, you might be able to receive compensation for your accident-related expenses, such as medical bills, physical therapy, and lost wages.
Who’s Liable for a Boating Injury
Boating accidents can occur for several reasons. Many victims think that the rental company is automatically at fault, but this is not the case. Ultimately, it depends on the circumstances surrounding the case and the events leading up to the incident.
Operator error is one of the most common causes of boating injuries in Florida. This can include traveling too fast in congested waters, operating the boat while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or being distracted when driving the boat. When the boat operator is acting negligently, it can cause a boat collision.
There may also be instances where another person in a different boat is responsible for your damages. This may happen when other operators are distracted, resulting in a collision.
Many boating accidents result from a defective or malfunctioning part. Some accidents that can result from faulty parts include:
- Capsizing or sinking
- Stopping suddenly in the water
- Exploding fuel tank
When this happens, the rental company or boat manufacturer might be responsible for your injuries. Remember, you only have two years to file a personal injury claim in Florida. The longer you wait, the less time an attorney will have to conduct an investigation. This might cause you to lose out on financial compensation.
All boats must have adequate safety equipment on board, including life jackets, first aid kits, navigational lights, a loud whistle, and flares. While failure to have proper safety equipment on board might not directly result in an accident, it won’t help in the event of one.
For instance, your boat may run out of power in the middle of the water. Without a flare on board, it might take hours or days for someone to rescue you. Even worse, being on a sinking boat with no life vest can result in drowning.
Contact a Skilled Central Florida Personal Injury Attorney Today
If you or a loved one suffers injuries from a boat rental accident, reach out to The Umansky Law Firm today. We provide aggressive legal representation to all clients in boating accidents, regardless of their injuries.