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The Florida Statutes

The 2017 Florida Statutes

Title XXIV
VESSELS
Chapter 327
VESSEL SAFETY
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F.S. 327.59
327.59 Marina evacuations.
(1) After June 1, 1994, marinas may not adopt, maintain, or enforce policies pertaining to evacuation of vessels which require vessels to be removed from marinas following the issuance of a hurricane watch or warning, in order to ensure that protecting the lives and safety of vessel owners is placed before interests of protecting property.
(2) Nothing in this section may be construed to restrict the ability of an owner of a vessel or the owner’s authorized representative to remove a vessel voluntarily from a marina at any time or to restrict a marina owner from dictating the kind of cleats, ropes, fenders, and other measures that must be used on vessels as a condition of use of a marina. After a tropical storm or hurricane watch has been issued, a marina owner or operator, or an employee or agent of such owner or operator, may take reasonable actions to further secure any vessel within the marina to minimize damage to a vessel and to protect marina property, private property, and the environment and may charge a reasonable fee for such services.
(3) Notwithstanding any other provisions of this section, in order to minimize damage to a vessel and to protect marina property, private property, and the environment, a marina owner may provide by contract that in the event a vessel owner fails to promptly remove a vessel from a marina after a tropical storm or hurricane watch has been issued, the marina owner, operator, employee, or agent may remove the vessel, if reasonable, from its slip or take whatever reasonable actions are deemed necessary to properly secure a vessel to minimize damage to a vessel and to protect marina property, private property, and the environment and may charge the vessel owner a reasonable fee for any such services rendered. In order to add such a provision to a contract, the marina owner must provide notice to the vessel owner in any such contract in a font size of at least 10 points and in substantially the following form:

NOTICE TO VESSEL OWNER

The undersigned hereby informs you that in the event you fail to remove your vessel from the marina promptly (timeframe to be determined between the marina owner or operator and the vessel owner) after the issuance of a tropical storm or hurricane watch for (insert geographic area), Florida, under Florida law, the undersigned or his or her employees or agents are authorized to remove your vessel, if reasonable, from its slip or take any and all other reasonable actions deemed appropriate by the undersigned or his or her employees or agents in order to better secure your vessel and to protect marina property, private property, and the environment. You are further notified that you may be charged a reasonable fee for any such action.

(4) A marina owner, operator, employee, or agent shall not be held liable for any damage incurred to a vessel from storms or hurricanes and is held harmless as a result of such actions. Nothing in this section may be construed to provide immunity to a marina operator, employee, or agent for any damage caused by intentional acts or negligence when removing or securing a vessel as permitted under this section.
History.s. 22, ch. 93-211; s. 11, ch. 95-146; s. 464, ch. 95-148; s. 2, ch. 95-150; s. 2, ch. 2006-309.