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Pensacola Legal Blog

Another airboat crash in Florida, but this time it was fatal

About a month ago, we wrote a post about a terrible airboat accident that left 14 people with injuries. The wreck occurred here in Florida, but thankfully no one was killed in the crash. Today, though, we have a far more unfortunate airboat accident -- one that claimed two lives and left two other people with injuries.

The crash occurred in Brevard County, Florida. Emergency responders from numerous departments descended upon the scene of the accident to try to find the two people who weren't recovered from the crash. However, they were not found for an extended period, and they drowned as a result. Within minutes of the crash, two other people who were aboard the airboat were recovered.

Four people injured after powerboat flips over

It is always fun going out on the water with your new boat and enjoying a day of sun and waves. Nothing beats the feeling of some warm sunshine while being surrounded by friends on a beautiful day. However, that fun feeling can rapidly change if the operator of a boat isn't doing so in a safe manner. Unfortunately, it appears that this may have been the case in the Florida Keys recently as a new powerboat tipped over and left four people injured.

One person had to be airlifted to a hospital, while the other three injured people were sent to a different hospital than the person who was airlifted. The extent of their injuries is unknown, and very little else about the crash is known at this time.

Discussing some intricate legal points about cruise ship accidents

Cruise ships are not immune to the same accidents and injuries that can occur in other vehicles -- and, really, in any place around the world. People can slip and fall on a staircase, just as they can slip and fall on a cruise ship. People can get injured in a car crash, just as they can get injured if their cruise ship crashes. The operator of a boat or a car could act negligently, just as the captain of a cruise ship could act in a dangerous or negligent manner.

How do these situations get resolved? With the help of maritime law, which governs incidents that happen at sea. One of the pillars of maritime law is that cruise ship operators must exercise reasonable care to ensure that their passengers are safe. If they fail to do this, they can be held liable for their negligence.

14 people injured after airboat trip goes awry

A terrible boat accident on Lake Panasoffkee in Florida left 14 people with injuries. Sumter County police are working the case, as is the Florida Wildlife and Fish Commission. Unfortunately, at this time, very little is known about the cause of the accident, though initial indications point to a mechanical failure triggering the injuries to the 14 people on the airboat.

If true, the mechanical failure would explain the sudden jostling that caused everyone on board to rattle around and get injured. No one was thrown from the boat, thankfully, but the extensive list of injuries is scary. Two people suffering injuries that left them in critical condition, and three others were left in serious condition as a result of the accident. Five others refused treatment. Only one person on the boat was not injured in the accident.

The risky business of shipyards and docks

Admiralty and maritime law covers such a wide array of potential problems, issues, and industries. It is easy to think that this only pertains to ships and vessels at sea -- but that isn't the case. One of the most important areas that admiralty and maritime law covers is shipyards and docks.

These are important places where much of the American economy thrives. There are thousands upon thousands of dock workers, shipyard workers, pier workers, and bridge workers that put their lives on the line everyday they punch their time card. They can suffer terrible injuries that ruin their lives, for a few weeks or for many years. They could even suffer fatal injuries.

Fatal cruise ship accident in Miami being investigated

In our last couple of posts, we have talked about cruise ship accidents. Today we continue with that theme, and in an unfortunate way: a tragic cruise ship accident claimed the life of an 8-year-old girl. The fatal accident occurred in Miami after a Carnival cruise ship had finished it's voyage. The 8-year-old was on the upper level of an inner atrium on the ship, and she fell some 20 feet to a lower level. She was transported to a local hospital, but she couldn't be saved.

The tragedy is under investigation and the police homicide department is working with investigators to determine what exactly happened here.

OSHA seeks to relax maritime worker protections

The Trump administration has been giving signs that it is not a friend to the concept of worker safety at sea.

This past summer, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) announced it was lightening safety restrictions for major shippers.

Port welcomes more cruise ships in a day than ever before

In our last post, we talked about a minor cruise ship accident involving a Disney vessel. The news stories that we use as sources for the topic of cruise ship accidents usually involve, obviously, an accident. However, today we want to change the discussion a little bit and focus on the potential for accidents at ports and shipyards when cruise ship season gets particularly busy -- and when ports decide to take on more vessels and people than they ever have before, thus sacrificing safety for money.

We are talking about Prince Edward Island just north of the border of the United States. One of the ports on the island, Port Charlottetown, welcomed four cruise ships to its docks a couple of weeks ago. That's the most ships that have docked at Port Charlottetown in a day in its history. More than 4,200 passengers docked that day, with an additional nearly 1,100 crew members landing as well.

No injuries, minor damage in Disney cruise ship accident

When you hear the phrase "cruise ship accident," it is likely that you think of a massive disaster like the Costa Concordia or the Titanic. This is understandable to a degree, because these incidents grabs headlines (for obvious reasons) and they stick in our minds more than a minor accident. But the fact of the matter is that cruise ship accidents can be minor in nature -- and when these occur, it makes it perfectly clear that even experienced captains of cruise ships can make the silliest mistakes.

The most recent example of a "minor" cruise ship accident comes from Nassau in the Bahamas, where a Disney cruise ship backed directly into a dock. Video of the incident is available in our source article, but we warn you that there is foul language in the video.

Boat flips on sand bar, 1 killed and 2 injured

We have written about a lot of recreational boating accidents on this blog before, and every time we do, there is the realization that it will happen again. Boating accidents are common here in Florida, and mistakes out on the water are bound to happen. Sometimes freak accidents occur too, but usually human error of some kind plays a role in a boating accident -- and these wrecks can claim lives as well as forever change the ones that survive.

Today is no different, sadly. Florida emergency responders made it to a boat accident near Ono Island first recently before Alabama Marine Police took over the investigation. The wreck itself involved a boat being operated by a veteran captain with two other people on board. The captain was killed in the wreck, and the two passengers were released from the hospital after being treated for their injuries.

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