When taking a beach vacation in Florida or along the Atlantic Coast, many travelers will pursue the added adventure of parasailing. Hanging from a parachute, attached from a rope to the speed boat, parasailers can glide above the sea like a bird, catching views of the shoreline and the coast. Though the excitement of a parasailing excursion attracts thousands of tourists every year, participants need to be wary of the potential for serious injury, even death.
When parasailing equipment fails, parasailers could become detached from the rope, fall from the parachute, or even crash into buildings, rocks, or other boats. Parasailing operators must be well-trained and know how to properly fasten equipment. They must also ensure that the boat, sail and other devices are maintained. Our Fort Lauderdale accident attorneys are dedicated to helping Florida natives and tourists who’ve been injured.
A parasailing crash can be deadly. In Panama City this month, two parasailers were injured in a parasailing accident. According to witnesses, two teenage girls were seriously injured after the line from the boat detached from a sail. The parachute, carrying the girls in tandem, was picked up by strong winds.
After a parasailing accident, it is important that an independent investigation be conducted on behalf of the victims. Victims should know what caused the accident, who is responsible, and how to pursue just compensation for any injuries. A victim may be entitled to financial recovery for medical costs, pain and suffering, as well as lost wages. Families who have lost a loved one in a parasailing accident may also be compensated for wrongful death.
In this recent parasailing incident, the victims were carried by gusts of wind under the parachute, smashed into a condominium and then were carried into a power line before crashing into several vehicles in a parking lot. The impact of the crash was so severe that the roof and windshield of an SUV in the parking lot shattered.
Such accidents are catastrophic and can leave victims with lasting and serious injuries. Parasailing victims may suffer broken bones, lacerations, head injuries, paralysis, or brain injuries. In many cases, the injuries are permanent. Witnesses said that the accident was “gruesome” and likely left the teenaged victims seriously injured. Though the condition of the victims has not been released, reports indicated that they were both still breathing after the collisions. The reports also indicated that both victims went limp after crashing into the condominium.
The scene was terrifying for victims who watched as the girls sailed into the building, then the power line, then eventually, to the parking lot. Many felt helpless watching them, unable to intervene or reach them until they hit the ground. One witness claimed that he saw an electrical explosion when the girls hit the power line.
In this case, the U.S. Coast Guard and Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission are investigating and interviewing witnesses in the crowd. The victims and families of similar accidents may be entitled to significant compensation. An independent investigation can help determine the cause of the accident and identify all responsible individuals and entities, including a parasailing or tourist company.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a boating or parasailing accident, contact the personal injury attorneys at Freeman, Mallard, Sharp & Gonzalez, LLC for a free and confidential consultation to discuss your rights. Call 1-800-561-7777.
More Blog Entries:
Boating Accidents in Palm Beach Target of New Watercraft Ban, State Not Happy!, South Florida Injury Lawyers Blog, May 5, 2012
Scuba Tragedy Highlights Liability, Risk in Broward, Palm Beach Counties, South Florida Injury Lawyers Blog, November 28, 2012