A day at the beach didn’t exactly turn out as planned for a man in Brevard County. According to My FOX Orlando, a fun day on a Jet Ski cost the victim his life. According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), two Jet Skis collided, sending one of the riders into cardiac arrest.
Thankfully, there was a good Samaritan on hand to help to transport EMS to the island where the victims were located. Until EMS arrives, four people administered CPR.
Our Orlando personal injury lawyers understand that Florida is the most dangerous state in the country for boating and personal watercraft accidents. According to the FWC, Brevard County is ranked as the 14th most dangerous county in the state for personal watercraft accidents. In 2012, there were close to 3,500 personal watercraft vessels recorded in the county. More than 3,440 were personal watercraft owned be residents/visitors, while more than 20 are rental personal watercraft. In Orange County, there are more than 6,30o personal watercraft registered, including nearly 50 personal watercraft. More than 100 riders have been seriously injured in Florida watercraft accidents in each of the last 5 years. Head injuries and broken bones are among the most common injuries reported.
You might think that most of these accident happen while vessels are changing speed or shifting direction, but the truth of the matter is that most of them happen while cruising. Unfortunately, most of these personal watercraft just cruised right into another vessel, as this was also the most common kind of accident witnessed throughout the year.
If you’re planning on hopping on a Jet Ski, WaveRunner or Sea-Doo (whether your own or a rental), there are a few things you’re going to want to remember to help ensure a safe day out on the water.
-Always wear a life jacket. Even if you can swim, a life jacket can save your life if you fall into the water.
-Make sure you’re aware of the vehicle’s safety precautions. If renting, make sure the owner/operators informs you of these precautions. Never go on without having a complete knowledge of the vehicle’s operation.
-Always stay alert. It’s easy to get caught up in the moment once you get used to handling the Jet Ski. But other boats, skiers, divers, or swimmers could be in your general area.
-Avoid drinking and riding. This one should be obvious, but alcohol is involved in fatal accidents all too often. This applies to passengers, too. Intoxicated passengers can serve as a serious distraction to Jet Ski drivers.
-Don’t get cocky and keep the tricks to a minimum. When boats and other watercraft pass, avoid using the wake as a ramp or launching point. You could end up launching the wrong direction or even land upside down.