Jet Ski Accident: Are There Water Traffic Laws?
Any motorized vehicle is subject to laws for the protection and safety of the drivers and others. This includes watercraft. There are water traffic laws for boats and jet skis to maintain safe waterways. If you are injured in a jet ski accident caused by reckless or negligent driving on the water, you may have the same rights to compensation as you would if injured in an auto accident.
Florida Laws for Boats and Personal Watercraft
All water vessels with motors are treated similarly to land vehicles in Florida. Motorized boats and water skis must be registered and licensed through Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. The water vessels must have visible registration numbers, hull identification numbers and a valid decal. Drivers must be at least 14 years of age and have a valid boating education ID card and photo ID card when operating a jet ski or personal watercraft.
As far as traffic laws, many of the same laws apply to boaters and drivers of jet skis as drivers of land vehicles. It is illegal to drive a watercraft under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Reckless or careless operation of a watercraft is a first-class misdemeanor. In addition, jet skis are not allowed to be operated at night, which is within a half an hour before sunrise or after sunset.
What if You Are Injured in a Jet Ski Accident?
A jet ski accident can be extremely dangerous. There is a risk of drowning and medical attention can be delayed when accidents occur on the water. Like any vehicle accident, it is illegal not to report an injury jet ski accident to the authorities or to leave the scene of the accident.
Injuries in jet ski accidents involving another watercraft should be treated similarly to a car accident. The at-fault driver can be liable for injuries caused by reckless or negligent driving. Injured parties need to obtain the name and personal information of the other driver and insurance information, if available. Liability insurance is not required for boaters in Florida, but many boaters or jet ski operators have insurance for their own protection or have coverage under their homeowner’s policy.
If you are injured in a jet ski accident caused by another watercraft driver, it is important to seek the advice of an attorney. These types of injury accidents can be difficult for victims to be properly compensated for without legal assistance. Contact our legal team at Tison Law Group to schedule a free consultation to discuss your jet ski accident injury claim.