The United States has more than 1.29 million jet-propelled watercraft registered across the country. Florida has more than 120,000 registered Personal Water Crafts (PWC), and operators as young as 14 may operate wave runners and other PWCs. With Florida's beautiful weather and thousands of miles of beaches and waterways, it is a haven for PWC operators.
A University of Florida study showed that wave runner accidents and other PWC accidents cause far greater injuries than other boating accidents. According to the study, riders involved in PWC accidents received more closed-head injuries, more trauma to the chest and abdomen, and more broken bones than riders in a boat. There are no seatbelts, and riders are often ejected from the wave runners, go airborne and hit stationary objects. Two of the most common causes of wave runner accidents are operator inexperience and speed.
"Just about anyone can buy or rent a wave runner, and it's very easy for inexperienced people to get into accidents when operating them. They are capable of going 50-60 miles per hour and are often used close to beaches." said Fort Myers Wave Runner Accident Lawyer, Randall Spivey, Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A.
The Personal Watercraft Industry Association (PWIA), which represents personal watercraft manufacturers, is pushing for increased education and safety requirements. "It's simply because we feel that it is important that these vessels be operated safely," association Executive Director David Dickerson said. "They are unique. They require a certain level of judgment and expertise."
In Riding Rules for Personal Watercraft the PWIA offers helpful information about:
- How to Avoid Collisions
- PWC Operating Rules
- Think Safe - Ride Safe
- Know Before You Go - your craft, local boating laws, navigational marks and signs, rules of the road
- Considerations - launch pad etiquette, sound, environment and other water enthusiasts
"When operating a wave runner or other personal watercraft, it's important to think of safety, both for the operator and for others enjoying Florida's waterways." says Attorney Spivey.
Fort Myers Wave Runner Accidents Lawyer, Randall L. Spivey is a Board Certified Civil Trial Attorney – the highest recognition for competence bestowed by the Florida Bar and a distinction earned by less than 2 percent of Florida attorneys. He has handled over 1,500 personal injury and wrongful death cases throughout Florida. For a free and confidential consultation to discuss your legal rights, contact the Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A., in Lee County at 239. 337.7483 or toll free at 1.888.477.4839, or by email to Randall@SpiveyLaw.com. Visit