Maritime accidents are no small deal. The fact that there are 759 boating Maritime accounts of accidents for over unexpected deaths or fatalities as stated by the Council for Nation Safe Boating in a year is already a cause for concern.
So what is considered to be a maritime accident?
- Any unplanned accident and unfortunate event on a dock, watercraft, offshore drilling rigs, cruise liners or participation in a water sport resulting in an accident.
- Any disaster occurring on a waterway, marine or sea.
A nationwide transportation statistics study on watercraft security was commissioned by the Department of U.S Transportation (DOT) and the Research and Innovative Technology Administration or RITA where (a) accident types, (b) the type of water vessel, and (c) casualties/victims were considered during an observation period of one year. Here are the top 5 most common maritime accidents based on maritime boundaries:
- Watercraft collision against another maritime vessel. An estimate of 1,329 collisions each year accounting to 953 injuries and 66 deaths.
- Collisions with set objects. 558 estimated records of accidents yearly resulting to 389 injuries and 35 deaths.
- Skier Mishaps. An estimated 492 records of skier casualties recorded each year resulting to 502 injuries and 11 deaths
- Boating (boater falls overboard). Annual record of 485 accidents resulting to 312 injuries and 208 deaths.
- Sinking vessel. Whether a vessel capsizes or simply sinks, an annual estimate of 398 accidents accounted for 284 injuries and 208 deaths.
Reports on maritime accidents
- Out of the 6,193 vessels that got involved in a maritime accident, 4,901 accidents were accounted based on maritime boundaries resulting to 61 fatalities or unexpected deaths, 155 injuries and a total estimated property damage of 811 dollars.
- In a conclusive report conducted as a study by the DOT and RITA dubbed as the Personal Watercraft Safety Data, 68 deaths, 919 injuries and 1,631 accidents occurred on personal watercrafts.
For the reader’s benefit, any vessel powered by jet pumps not taller than thirteen (13) feet is considered to be a personal watercraft. These are commonly operated by one person and have seating spaces for others. One famous example would be the “Jet Ski’s” you see on beach resorts.
Surviving maritime accidents
According to a one-year study of alleged maritime emergencies conducted by the U.S. Coast Guard Search and Rescue Statistics, 427 out of 476 deaths due to drowning were caused by individuals not suited into their life jackets. This fact alone cannot stress enough the importance of wearing jackets when riding a watercraft. Not that you have to wear it all the time (unless you’re in a costume party in cruise ship). However, taking extra precaution by knowing where to find the lifejackets already increases your chances of surviving a possible maritime accident.