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Watercraft Vehicles Cause a High Risk of Jet Ski and Boating Injuries in Fort Lauderdale

The LA Times is reporting that singer Sean Kingston is going to recover from his injuries after a Miami jet ski accident.

Our Fort Lauderdale personal injury attorneys know how dangerous jet skis can be and represent many victims involved in Florida watercraft accidents.
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Sean Kingston was on a jet ski with a female passenger when he struck the Palm Island Bridge. Both were rushed to a nearby Miami hospital. The female passenger escaped serious injuries while Kingston suffered a fractured jaw, water in his lungs and a broken wrist. It was reported that the female passenger believed they were traveling too fast, and when Kingston tried to avoid hitting the bridge, he lost control. The investigation revealed that alcohol did not play a role in the accident.

There are more than 40,000 personal watercraft (PWC) vehicles registered in South Florida. It is little wonder that dozens of riders are injured every year. According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, in 2009, more than 34 percent of PWC crashes happened in Monroe, Pinellas and Bay Counties. Monroe had the most accidents at 25. The majority of PWC injuries are from the watercraft hitting another vessel, crashing into a fixed object or the operator falling off the watercraft. Most accidents are due to speeding, driver inexperience and inattention.

Florida law states no one younger than 14 can operate a PWC, and no one younger than 18 can lease or rent a PWC. Operating a PWC is allowed between sunrise and sunset. It is illegal to weave in and out of congested waterway traffic, play “chicken” and jump wakes that are too close to that vessel.

Personal Watercraft safety tips:

-Take a personal watercraft safety course.

-Wear a life jacket and attach the engine cut-off lanyard to your wrist or life jacket.

-Don’t drink and ride.

-Be alert to your surroundings.

-Keep at least 50 feet away from other vessels. Remember PWC’s have no brakes.

-Never ride at night.

-Most accidents happen with borrowed or rented machines. If you do lend out your machine, educate the one you are lending it to on how to use it safely.

If you have been injured in a Florida watercraft accident in West Palm Beach, Margate, Miami or Fort Lauderdale, contact the personal injury attorneys at Freeman, Mallard, Sharp & Gonzalez. Even if you have signed a liability waiver from a rental company, this doesn’t necessarily release them from the responsibility related to renting poorly maintained equipment or renting to customers who obviously lack the skills or abilities to handle such vehicles in a safe manner. Call for a free and confidential appointment to discuss your rights. Call 1-800-529-2368.

More Blog Entries:

Boating accidents often lead to drowning victims in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, South Florida Injury Lawyers Blog, May 26, 2011

Lawmakers tackle issue of watercraft accidents in Fort Lauderdale, elsewhere in Florida, South Florida Injury Lawyers Blog, March 5, 2011

ATV, JetSki accidents a high risk of injury in West Palm Beach, South Florida Injury Lawyers Blog, April 30, 2011

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