Now that summer is back in full swing many people will be venturing out on the water to enjoy fishing, beaches, and boating. Tampa boat accidents don’t occur all the time but they are still a possibility—especially for those who do not familiarize themselves with how to safely operate a boat. By understanding some of the most common causes of boat accidents in Tampa, you can hopefully learn to avoid these types of situations and keep you, your family, and your friends safe as you enjoy the open water.

Loading a Boat Improperly

There are two primary ways that a boat can be loaded improperly—by overloading it or by distributing the weight unevenly. Both of these spell trouble when boating and can lead to your vessel capsizing. Always make sure to check the weight and distribution of your load before you head out, and remember to keep an eye on it as you’re on the water as well.

Ignoring the Weather

It’s no secret that in Florida the weather can turn nasty in a heartbeat; however, many boaters still do not take the time to research and stay updated on weather conditions. Being stranded on the water in a storm can lead to all sorts of trouble—including capsizing, falling overboard, or being struck by lightning.

Impaired Judgment

For many people who boat for pleasure, alcohol is often a common occurrence on board. While there’s nothing wrong with enjoying your time on the water, operating a boat under the influence is not only illegal, but can also be downright deadly for you and your passengers. If you’re going to drink while boating make sure to assign a driver who hasn’t been drinking. Make sure there is someone on board who is capable of operating the vessel in a safe manner.

Ignoring Safety Precautions

Ignoring safety precautions about where to sit when a boat is in motion is a good way to fall overboard, especially on vessels that can achieve high speeds. Sitting on or near gunwales and sideboards are two common unsafe acts that happen frequently on a boat. Similarly, not adequately bracing yourself for a turn can cause you to fall overboard and sustain potentially fatal injuries.

If you get into a boating accident, it is important to receive the advice of an attorney that can walk you through the complexity of marine law to make sure you receive the maximum amount for your damages.  For more information, call 844-Hunter-Law.

References

[1]  http://www.rescuediver.org/rescue-tech/boatops5.htm