Parents are faced with many challenges in dealing with the Florida wrongful death of a child. The death of a child is typically unexpected and a total shock to the family. Family and friend support are vital when a child dies. The support of the family’s church / religious institution can also be comforting. While legal issues are not the first to come to mind, many parents are in need of solid legal advice when a child suffers a personal injury or dies as the result of the negligence of another person, property owner, or business. A Florida child injury lawyer can answer many questions that arise when a child is hurt. In addition, there are books and other resources out there for parents including the book – The ABCs of Child Injury – Legal Rights of the Injured Child – What Every Parent Should Know. The book has chapters on Medical Bills / Medical Treatment, Damages / Compensation, Swimming and Water Related Injuries, and other topics. See Free Book for Parents Dealing with an Unexpected Child Injury.
According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation 2010 Boating Accidents Statistical Report, there were 668 boating accidents and 79 boating related fatalities. Many of these deaths and injuries incurred were due to victims falling overboard and drowning.
For example, a 13 year-old boy suffered facial injuries from a boat’s propellers in Jacksonville, Florida. The boy was operating the boat in a Ponte Vedra waterway. The teenager lost control of the boat and either fell out or jumped into a canal located near Granada Lane, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife investigators. The boat’s propellers struck the boy in the face when he was in the water. He was air-lifted to Shands Jacksonville for treatment according to First Coast News.
The State of Florida has taken the initiative to educate boaters about boating accident prevention. The FWC, in conjunction with the National Safe Boating Council, Bombardier Recreational Products, Inc., West Marine, the U.S. Coast Guard and others have launched a statewide safety campaign for boaters called the “Wear It Florida.” This campaign encourages boaters to wear life safety jackets anytime they are on the water, and educates boaters about the convenience of the generally unknown inflatable life jackets. The FCW is a firm believer that many boating fatalities can be prevented by the use of wearing a life jacket.
When boating, all children should be fitted with life preservers and life jackets. This general rule also applies to all adults. The simple act of wearing a life jacket can save a life or at least reduce the risks of drowning. A tragic story was recently reported by the Orlando Sentinel. A man died of an apparent accidental drowning while he was canoeing with his nephew. You can read more about this story at Canoe flips, man dies in apparent accidental drowning near Ocala.
While the wearing of a life jacket may be uncomfortable or an inconvenience, it can save lives of those wearing them. In addition, many lives have been lost through the years of those who have gone into the water in an attempt to save a person who was not wearing a life jacket. Before boating, make sure that all the appropriate equipment is available and in good repair for all boaters.
You can read more about Swimming, Water Park, and Water Way Injuries and other child injuries in the book – “>The ABCs of Child Injury – Legal Rights of the Injured Child – What Every Parent Should Know. You can receive a free copy of this book by clicking here.
The death of an 11-year-old For Myers boy, Michael Duda, was confirmed by The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.
Duda apparently died after he feel off a boat near Plantation Key. Investigators say Duda was riding in the 17-foot boat when the operator mae a sharp turn, throwing Duda overboard and causing him to be struck by an oncoming vessel. Apparently, the operator of the vessel was 16-year-old at the time of the accident. Neither he nor two other passengers were injured.
No charges have been filed. If you would like to read more about this unfortunate story see 11-year-old Fort Myers boy dies after thrown from boat.
In Florida, boating is an activity and hobby enjoyed by many people. Unfortunately with many outdoor activities like boating, there are dangers and risks that can lead to serious personal injuries, and in come cases death. One risk associated with boating activies is related to carbon monoxide poisoning. Boats with cabins and sleeping quarters are often times equipped with a generator to power the boats electricity and air conditioning unit. A properly maintained and installed generator that is positioned correctly on the boat can provide boat owners and guests with the comforts and convenience provided by electricity and air conditioning while docked or anchored offshore. An improperly installed and/or malfunctioning generator can actually cause personal injuries and, in fact, can lead to the death of an unknowing occupant of the boat. The Associated Press reported that a couple (Sandra Lupton and Howard Lupton) died as a result of carbon monoxide poisoning in the sleeping quarters/cabin of a Baja Cruiser (29 foot). The couple’s boat was anchored offshore at Ponce Inlet (disappearing island). Tragically, the couple was discovered by their son. You can read more about this story at Florida Medical Examiner reports that Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Caused Death of Boaters from Palatka Florida.
It is expected that an investigation will be conducted as to the equipment and maintenance on this boat and what steps, if any, could have been taken to avoid this most unfortunate tragedy. this story shows the importance of boating safety as to all aspects of the boat, including but not limited to, the generator and electrical system.
Two children were injured in Destin, Florida after a line broke on a parasail. At the time of the incident, the parasail boat was being towed in due to bad weather. The children sustained minor injured and were taken to a hospital in Pensacola, Florida. The incident is being investigated to determine if charges will be brought.
An accident like this raises many legal issues:
What was the business’s procedures for bad weather?
In Florida and other states with waterways and boaters, safety should be a primary focus for those operating boats, jet skis, and other watercraft. In addition, passengers should also be aware of safety measures that can be taken to help prevent boating accidents and related personal injuries. In Delray Beach, Florida, the Associated Press reported that a Florida boating accident resulted in the death of Christopher Smith (age 31) when he was thrown from a boat that struck a navigational marker in the Intercoastal Waterway. See Bond Set for Boat Operator in Delray Beach, Florida Fatal Boating Accident.
Since there was a crash with resulting death, a full investigation will be conducted. It was reported that none of the passengers on board the vessel were wearing a life jacket. It is uncertain if the wearing of a life jacket would have made a difference as to the injuries and resulting death of the boat passenger.
As Floridians go through Spring and Summer, there will be other boating accidents. Because of the dangers of being in a boat accident or the dangers of a drowning in any of Florida’s multitude of waterways, people should take precautions by wearing life jackets, checking and re-checking weather conditions, operating a boat at a safe speed, checking and re-checking engines and mechanical equipment, having other life saving devices onboard, and making sure that there is proper supervision especially for children when boating.
Kidnapping including parental kidnapping incidents can be quite frightening for the child, family members, and the aggrieved parent. These cases can be complicated when a parent, without consent and / or a court order, flees to another country. Many children are separated by a parent for years and even a life time under these circumstances. The United States Coast Guard recently rescued a 3 year old who was allegedly kidnapped by his father. It was not clear from the article posted at the Orlando Sentinel Newspaper Website but it appears that the father may have been on the way to Mexico with the child.
Fortunately, most parents act in the best in interests in the child even when there is a contentious separation or divorce. Children are often times innocent pawns in battles, disputes and arguments between parents.