It was a sad weekend in South Florida when the city lost one of its brightest young stars. This preventable tragedy is a story we hear far too often.
While the majority of our practice, since 1971, has focused on those injured, whether passengers or crewmembers, on cruise ships, much of our practice involves smaller recreational vessels like the one involved in the tragic, unexpected death of Marlins star pitcher Jose Fernandez.
Boating accidents are just as much of a reality as any other kind. As such, basic emergency knowledge can make a huge difference when things go awry. And yet, even with advance preparation, there are some situations that cannot be helped.
A recent story out of Miami reminds us of this.
Tragic Boat Crash Near Miami Beach
Early on Sunday, September 25th, 2016, a boating accident took the lives of three people off the coast of Miami Beach, Florida. One of the victims was 24-year-old Jose Fernandez, who was the superstar pitcher for the Miami Marlins.
According to reports, a crew from the Coast Guard spotted the 32-foot overturned vessel while passing a jetty along Government Cut. Two of the deceased were found under the boat. The third was found in nearby shallow water. None of the victims were wearing life vests.
At the time of this post, investigations are still underway to determine the cause of the crash. However, investigators have stated that they believe the boat may have been speeding, based on the severity of the crash.
A spokesman from the Florida Wildlife Conservation described the condition of the boat as “horrible.”
At this time, it is understood that the boat, Kaught Looking, belonged to a friend of Fernandez, and was frequently seen in the area.
Our deepest condolences go out to the families of all those involved, including Fernandez’s girlfriend, pregnant with the couple’s first child. In the aftermath of such a horrific incident, we are grieving this unnecessary loss of life.
Small Boat Doesn’t Mean Less Risk
The choice to operate a personal boat is a big one and one not to be taken lightly.
If speed was indeed the issue at play, we cannot help but to wonder what caused the driver of the boat to speed? Was alcohol involved? Had anyone on the boat taken illicit substances? While this is only speculation, we know that impairment of any kind can lead to poor decisions that can result in tragic accidents such as this one. The vast majority of all incidents at sea involve alcohol.
LM&W, PA Is Here to Help
Unfortunately, accidents on the water happen more often than anyone would like. As a maritime law firm with over 165 years of combined experience, we are familiar with a wide range of maritime tragedies.
So if you have experienced catastrophic injury or you believe a loved one suffered wrongful death on the water, a maritime lawyer may be able to help. Our team is on hand to listen to your case and help you get your life back on track. Do not hesitate to contact us today.