Florida attracts many tourists from across the country and even around the world each year. The state offers amusement parks, beaches, golf courses, desirable shopping, and much more. Many people hire professional tours to explore their areas of interest. Some companies offer horse and carriage tours that allow individuals to sightsee and learn about specific parts of towns. While most of these rides take place without incident, the reality is that accidents do happen. If you or someone close to you has been injured in a Florida horse and carriage ride accident, you need to speak to a skilled Miami injury attorney who can help.
In most cases, open carriages do not have seat belts. In the event of an accident with a motor vehicle, there is little protection for the passengers, who could be ejected from the carriage, suffering severe injuries. In other cases, when the carriage overturns due to an accident, passengers inside may be pinned down and suffer crush injuries from the weight on top of them. In addition, passengers who fly out of the carriage could end up being trampled by the horses pulling the carriage.
In Florida, horse and carriage accidents are evaluated according to the same standards as an automobile accident. As a result, horses and carriages must follow traffic laws and operate in a manner that does not endanger others on the road. Fault in horse and carriage accident cases will be determined using the legal theory of negligence. Negligence takes place when a party causes injuries or death by failing to use the level of care that a reasonably prudent party would have used under the same or similar circumstances. For example, if a horse and carriage overturns because the carriage driver fails to make a U-turn properly, the driver will likely be liable, along with the company that operated the horse-drawn carriage. On the other hand, if a horse and carriage accident was caused by a car driver rear-ending the carriage, that car driver will likely be liable for any resulting harm.