Places like Miami are popular destinations for boating and sailing. According to national data, the state of Florida had 950,000 registered vessels in 2018. If that is not enough a million more unregistered vessels can be found sailing in Florida waters.
Many people spend huge amounts to buy beautiful boats but seldom spend on training their crew for better boating. Here is everything to know about distracted boating, its consequences, and ways to avoid it.
What Is Distracted Boating?
Distracted boating is similar to distracted driving. It refers to the boat driver’s lack of situational awareness that leads to fatal accidents. Distracted boating has become a common thing in Florida waters and it has led to a rise in accidents.
The chances of an accident are aggravated due to a large number of distractions like crowded harbors, weather conditions, boats traveling in all directions at different speeds, and passengers moving around. According to the U.S. Coast Guard 2016 annual report, Florida reported around 684 accidents which are higher than California State.
If you get involved in any such incident, take help from a Miami Boating Accident Attorney.
Consequences of Distracted Boating
According to recent stats, distracted boating is the next looming threat to the Florida boating community. The statistics show around 59 people lost their lives in boating accidents. And 300 plus were injured. In most fatality cases, 80% to 90% of people drowned in distracted boating accidents.
If your family member is injured in a boating accident, you need to contact Miami Boating Accident Attorney for a consultation. According to Florida maritime laws you can claim monetary compensation for your family member (who is a victim). You can claim monetary compensation for loss of wages and medical expenses including future medical care for the injured.
How to Avoid Distracted Boating Accidents?
The National Safe Boating Council has developed a simple protocol to prevent distracted boating accidents. The protocol is known as SCAN which stands for Search, Concentrate, Analyze, and Negotiate. Here is a simple way to follow this protocol.
Search– You need to scan 360° around your boat every time you are at the sea. As you can see the ocean near the port is always busy due to the arrival and departure of boats of varied sizes. The distance between your boat and the vessel at the front or behind will always change depending on your speed. The faster you operate your boat, the farther you have to look for any approaching boats.
Concentrate– You need to concentrate on the data shown in the electronic displays. What type of boat, what is the speed, is it sailing or anchoring. These are some of the things you need to concentrate on.
Analyze– You need to analyze every boat around you. Is it going far or coming closer? Remember if you see the relative position of your boat and the boat approaching never changes and you are getting closer to it, you are on a collision course.
Negotiate– When you have situational awareness, the next thing to do is make the right decision. Are you going to head in a different direction to avoid a collision or slow down and turn away your boat? You need to follow navigational rules when taking proper action like overtaking a boat, meeting head-on, or crossing the path of the boat. In all situations, you need to consider the measurements and make adjustments to stay safe.
It is the responsibility of every boater to follow navigation rules while boating that will reduce the distracted boating accidents and make ocean travel safer for everyone. For clarity on these actions, you can ask your attorney and get maximum information to avoid any impending lawsuit.