Fort Myers Injury Attorneys: Teen Loses Part of Leg in Florida Boating Accident

by Carmen Dellutri on August 21, 2012

Florida jet-ski accident attorneyA 17-year-old from Oklahoma lost part of his leg in a tragic Florida boating accident earlier this month. The teen was riding on a rented personal watercraft (PWC) when he collided with a boat, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

The accident marks the latest in a series of jet ski accidents this summer, many of which have resulted in serious injuries and even death. As Fort Myers injury attorneys, we can’t help but wonder if these accidents could have been prevented.

In the most recent accident, the injured teen was riding on a rented jet ski. Companies in Florida are prohibited from renting a PWC to anyone under 18 years of age. However, children 14 years or older may operate a rented PWC, as long as someone 18 or older rented it.

Under Florida’s boating laws, companies renting PWC must also make sure that riders know how to operate the jet ski safely. This includes providing on-the-water demonstration and conducting a check ride to evaluate the proficiency of renters.  This instruction must include, at a minimum, operational characteristics of the vessel, safe operation and right-of-way, operator responsibilities, and local waterway characteristics. This is particularly important when it comes to young riders.

In addition, companies must display safety information on the proper operation of a PWC. The information must include: propulsion, steering and stopping characteristics of jet pump vessels, the location and content of warning labels, how to re-board a PWC, the applicability of the Navigation Rules to PWC operation, problems with seeing and being seen by other boaters, reckless operation, and noise, nuisance and environmental concerns.

It is unclear if the company renting the jet ski involved in this accident followed the Florida boating laws described above. At this time, the accident is still under investigation.

The Dellutri Law Group is focused on making bad situations better and putting lives back together. If you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a Fort Myers accident caused by someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation.

To learn more about your legal options, contact our experienced Fort Myers injury attorneys for a free consultation. 

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