Lawsuit filed after CT woman dies in parasailing accident - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Lawsuit filed after CT woman dies in parasailing accident


A lawsuit has been filed on behalf of a Connecticut woman, who died while parasailing during a vacation in Florida last year.

Kathleen Miskell, 28, and her husband Stephen were parasailing in the Atlantic Ocean off Pompano Beach on Aug. 15, 2012.

They were both on a tandem parasail, which was being operated by Waveblast Watersports II, Inc.

That is when Kathleen Miskell was dropped from her harness and plummeted nearly 200 feet, according to the South Florida law firm, Searcy Denney Scarola Barnhart & Shipley PA.

"Kathleen's death is a tragedy that shines a cautionary light on the very serious dangers of this unregulated and unchecked recreational activity," said Searcy Denney attorney Karen Terry, who represents Stephen Miskell, in a statement Wednesday. "Her death, and others, would have been prevented if proper regulations were in place."

A bill that contained the following provisions was recently rejected:

  • Required parasail operators to carry insurance
  • Banned parasailing when wind gusts exceed 25 mph
  • Prohibited the activity in rain or fog, or when lightning occurs nearby.

"The rejection of these regulations by the Florida State Legislature is unconscionable," Terry said. "The unfortunate decision, which exposes others to significant injury and death, seems to reflect a misguided resistance to intelligent regulation of any sort. In this case, one might also conclude that powerful hotel industry interests have an added economic incentive to allow these life-threatening risks to go unmonitored."

Terry also provides research that more than 70 people have died due to parasailing crashes between 1982 and 2012.

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