It's the Law

Boating Accidents


An operator involved in a boating accident must:

  • Stop his or her vessel immediately at the scene of the accident unless the action would endanger his or her own vessel, crew, or passengers and…
  • Give assistance to anyone injured in the accident and…
  • Give his or her name, address, and identifying number of his or her vessel to the other vessel's operator and/or owner of damaged property.

Vessel operators involved in an accident must report the accident by the quickest means possible if the accident has resulted in:

  • A death or disappearance of a person or…
  • An injury causing a person to require medical attention beyond first aid or…
  • Damage to the vessel and other property of $2,000 or more.

The report of the accident must be made to:

  • The Division of Law Enforcement, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (call 1-888-404-3922, or *FWC from a mobile phone) or…
  • The sheriff of the county where the accident occurred or…
  • The police department of the municipality in which the accident occurred.

Failure to report an accident and failure to render aid are both criminal offenses.