Florida is a boating lover’s paradise. Surrounded by water on three sides, and filled with lakes, rivers and inlets throughout, the Sunshine State is a popular place to own and operate a boat.

With all the boaters enjoying the water, the possibility for accidents is also high. Accidents involving boats and other watercraft happen frequently, and serious injuries often result. As the summer tourist season brings even more people to the state, keep these three common boating hazards in mind so you can protect yourself and your family.

1. Collisions

The most common misfortune to occur is colliding with another boater or a fixed object, such as a dock. Accidents can happen when one or both vehicles do not have someone paying attention at the helm. Depending on the watercraft involved, these can cause more than just cosmetic damage to the boat. If someone is operating a Jet Ski and slams into the side of a boat, it could mean catastrophic injuries for the rider. Always keep a watchful eye.

2. Operating a boat while drinking

A day out on the open water can make a person thirsty, and alcoholic beverages frequently find their way onto watercraft. The operator needs to understand that boating while intoxicated can lead to the same type of devastating results as operating a car while drunk. The person in charge of the boat, therefore, should not partake in the festivities and maintain a level of sobriety to stay alert and in control.

3. Slip and falls

A wet floor on a boat or even dock can spell major injury. Keep in mind that water will find its way onto the deck, and if people do not keep an eye out, or if the floor of the boat is not maintained correctly, a fall and resulting injury may occur.

Boating is a fun pastime that can lead to pleasant, long-lasting memories. Keep these three dangers in mind so you can keep those happy musings.