Hundreds of people go parasailing every year in Myrtle Beach, Charleston and other areas along the South Carolina coastline. Most go thinking they will enjoy a thrilling adventure with panoramic views. Few understand the risks they are taking.
According to a Special Investigation Report on Parasailing by the National Traffic Safety Board, there are no federal requirements for training or equipment inspections for parasailing operators. Nor is there a federal requirement to suspend parasailing when weather conditions are unsafe.
Risks of Parasailing
When you go parasailing, you are putting your life in the hands of an operator who may be untrained. You are relying on equipment that may be defective or worn. Once you are aloft, you will have no ability to steer or control the canopy. Since you will be hundreds of feet above the ground, accidents usually result in serious injury or death.
According to the Parasail Safety Council, 73 people died in parasailing accidents from 1982 to 2012. More than 400 suffered injuries that required hospitalization. In response to deaths, many communities, including Myrtle Beach, have adopted local parasailing ordinances to increase safety.
The victims of parasailing accidents may encounter difficulties with the civil justice system when they try to obtain compensation for their losses. Parasailing accidents are covered by Maritime law, which is quite different from the laws available to victims of car accidents. If you hire an attorney who does not understand Maritime law, your case may not be successful.
South Carolina attorney S. Scott Bluestein has more than two decades of experience handling parasailing and other maritime injury cases.