Boating Accident News 7/30/2013

By Kristy Moore posted 07-30-2013 11:28 AM

07-26-13 PIERMONT, NY Woman's Body Pulled From Hudson River After Wedding Party Boat Crash A deadly nighttime speedboat crash on the Hudson River hurled a bride-to-be and her fiance's best man into the water and left the groom and 3 others injured, including a friend charged with vehicular manslaughter on Sat. (07-27), just 2 wks. before the couple was to exchange their vows. Six friends were on board the boat Fri. night (07-26) when it struck a barge near the Tappan Zee Bridge, sending Lindsey Stewart and Mark Lennon, both 30, into the water and injuring the other 4, including groom-to-be Brian Bond. A body matching Stewart's description was recovered Sat. while Lennon is presumed dead, Rockland Co. Sheriff's Dept. Chief William Barbera said. The search for Lennon's body will resume Sun. (07-28). Authorities charged the boat's operator, Jojo John, 35, of Nyack, with vehicular manslaughter and vehicular assault. He was arraigned from a hospital bed and ordered held on $250,000 bond, Barbera said. John is suspected of operating the boat while intoxicated but authorities are still awaiting the result of blood tests. Attempts to reach John's family were not immediately successful and it was not clear if he had an attorney. Earlier Sat., authorities pulled a woman's body from the water that matched Stewart's description. Officials were working to confirm that the body was Stewart's but it was unclear how long that could take. Stewart and Lennon were thrown from the boat when it struck a barge carrying materials for the construction of a replacement for the Tappan Zee Bridge, about a half-hour's drive N. of New York City. The boat, a 21-ft. Stingray, had left the village of Piermont for a short trip across the river to Tarrytown. Stewart, of Piermont, worked for an insurance company. She and Bond were set to be married Aug. 10. Bond was knocked unconscious in the crash but later woke and was able to call 911, Stewart's mother said. Stewart's stepfather, Walter Kosik, said the couple have known each other since they were young children and used to go to church together. Barbera declined to identify the other people aboard the boat and had no information on their conditions. He said the barge was equipped with lights, but it was still difficult to see on the water late at night. The NY State Thruway Authority, which is overseeing the bridge project, said it was reviewing safety procedures.Read full story here.
07-20-13 LAKE PUEBLO, CO Teen Seriously Injured In Jet Ski Crash Two teens on jet skis collided Sat. evening (07-20), landing one in the hosp. with serious injuries. The accident happened around 8 p.m. Sat. at Lake Pueblo State Park. A 15-y/o girl was airlifted to the hosp. with head trauma. The other teen was treated at the scene. At this time, it's unknown if drugs or alcohol were a factor in the accident. Read full story here.
07-20-13 BRIDGEWATER, CT Two jet skis collide on Lake Lillinonah Two jet skis collided on Lake Lillinonah Sat. (07-20) at approximately 11 a.m. resulting in 2 New Milford residents being transported to Danbury Hosp. "There were 2 jet skis involved and 3 individuals," said Dwayne Gardner, spokesman with the Dept. of Energy and Environmental Protection. "The 51-y/o male and 46-y/o woman who were together on one jet ski were transported to Danbury Hosp. with undisclosed injuries," Gardner said. "The 53-y/o man from New Milford on the other jet ski was not injured." The man and woman transported were identified as New Milford residents. Bridgewater and Brookfield FDs responded to the accident, setting up a staging area at the Bridgewater boat launch site on Route 133.Read full story here.
07-25-13 EDGEWATER, MD Three large boats destroyed by fire at Edgewater marina Anne Arundel Co. firefighters battled an early morning blaze that consumed 3 large boats docked at Oak Grove Marina in Edgewater. The fire was first reported in the 2800 block of Solomons Island Road around 4:40 a.m. Once crews arrived on the scene they found 3 large pleasure craft, approximately 30-42 ft. in length, engulfed in flames. Firefighters were able to bring the flames under control around 5:30 a.m. The fire heavily damaged all 3 boats, and they are considered totalled, according to Anne Arundel Fire officials. A portion of the pier was also burned. No injuries were reported. One fire boat remained at the scene after most crews left, say fire officials. The Maryland Dept. of the Environment is on the scene for fuel spilled from the boats. The cause of the fire is under investigation. Read full story here.
07-20-13 GAINESVILLE, GA Girl, 16, is hospitalized after she is cut by boat propeller on Lake Lanier State officials are investigating a boating accident on Lake Lanier that injured a 16-y/o girl. Ga. DNR spokesman David Allen said the teen was climbing into a boat on Sun. (07-20) when she fell and was cut by the propeller near Buford Dam. The Times of Gainesville reports that she suffered a 16-inch cut to her left thigh. The girl, whose name was not released, was taken to Gwinnett Med. Center in Lawrenceville. Allen said she is expected to recover from the injury.Read full story here.
07-27-13 MARION COUNTY, AR Millington child killed in boating accident Eleven-y/o William Feehan of Millington lost his life this weekend while on vacation with his family and neighbors. James Harvey said his family and the Feehans went on a camping trip to Bull Shoals. They decided to rent a deck boat on Sat. (07-27) at the Bull Shoals Boat Dock in Arkansas. He said William’s father Matthew was driving the boat while William,  William’s brother and Harvey’s son were pulled behind in an inner-tube when the boat suddenly malfunctioned. “We had gotten 3 of the kids on an inner-tube and we were pulling them doing a zigzag motion, throwing them on the waves a little bit. When the boys’ father was banking to the right, the steering wheel ripped out of his hands, the wheel spun. It did a hairpin turn of 180 and ran back over the boys,” he said. The boat hit and killed William. The Arkansas Game and Fish Comm. continues to investigate the tragic accident. The father so far does not face any charges. The Boat Dock where they rented the boat said that the boat is going under extensive testing to determine how and if the boat malfunctioned. Read full story here.
07-26-13 NATCHITOCHES PARISH, LA Elderly Campti man dies in boating accident on Black Lake An elderly Campti man died Fri. night (07-26) in a boating accident on Black Lake, according to the Natchitoches Parish Sheriff's Office. The body of C.D. Baker, 94, of Sandy Point, was found by another boater just after officials had received a 911 call about an empty boat and debris in the water near the Sandy Point boat launch. The first 911 call was received about 8:29 p.m. The caller reported seeing the empty boat and debris, and said a man had been seen in the boat shortly before.
Baker was not wearing a life vest. The body was released to the Natchitoches Parish Coroner's Office to determine the exact cause of death.Read full story here.
07-27-13 OLD FORGE, NY 2 seriously injured in Old Forge boating crash Drunken boating is believed to have caused a boating crash in Old Forge this weekend that sent 2 people to the hosp., the Town of Webb PD said. Janelle Nixon, 24, of Middletown was operating recklessly in the area of Soper Point on First Lake at about 5 p.m. Sat. (07-27) when she ran on top of another boat operated by James Foley of Old Forge. Foley's boat filled with water, and needed to be bailed out by neighbors and other boaters. Foley and his wife, Judith, were seriously injured in the crash and were taken to St. Elizabeth Med. Center in Utica for treatment. Nixon was charged wtih reckless operation of a vessel, BWI and operating a vessel with a blood alcohol content of 0.08 percent or higher. Additional charges may be pending, police said. The Old Forge FD assisted at the scene. Read full story here.
07-27-13 ANCHORAGE, AK Wainwright soldier dies in boating mishap Officials say a 23-y/o soldier based at Alaska’s Fort Wainwright has died in a boating accident in in the Copper Center area. The Army says Pfc. Christopher Covington of Temple Hills, Md., died after the mishap Sat. (07-27) on the Klutina River. An autopsy will be conducted by the state medical examiner’s office. Alaska State Troopers say Covington and fellow Fort Wainwright soldiers — 23-y/o George Brady and 39-y/o Columbus Jones Jr. — and Jones’ 11-y/o son, Columbus Jones III, were fishing on a jet boat operated by the elder Jones. The boat experienced mechanical problems and the current pushed it into a submerged rock, where the vessel overturned. The boy was rescued, and his father and Brady made it to shore. Covington was not breathing when he was found. Read full story here.
07-28-13 NEWPORT, RI Portsmouth woman charged in drunken-boating incident A Portsmouth woman was arrested Sun. (07-28) and charged with operating a watercraft while intoxicated and refusing to submit to a chemical test for alcohol. Troopers assigned to the RI State Police Marine Unit responded to a minor collision between 2 boats in Newport Harbor outside Fort Adams State Park during the Newport Folk Festival. The operator of the boat that caused the collision tried to leave, according to state police. Deborah Saboya, 51, of Bristol Ferry Rd, Portsmouth, was taken to the Wickford Barracks, where she refused to submit to a chemical test, the state police said. She pleaded not guilty in District Court, S. Kingstown, on Monday. Read full story here.
07-26-13 EAGLE, CO Woman dies in freak boating accident on Reudi Reservoir A 21-y/o woman was killed at Reudi Reservoir on Fri. afternoon (07-26) in a boating accident. According to Eagle Co. Sheriff’s Office,  someone on the reservoir called 911 at approximately 3:37 p.m. with a report of a female party who had sustained a "spike" to the head. Emergency workers responded and confirmed the woman was dead at the scene. Eagle Co. Coroner Kara Bettis has identified the victim of the accident at Ruedi Reservoir as 21-y/o Haley Rinaldi of Basalt. Witnesses said Rinaldi was being pulled on a tube behind a boat when the tow rope snapped and the metal connector struck her in the head. The incident occurred at approximately 3:30 p.m. Bettis has ruled the manner of death as accidental. Reudi Reservoir is about 15 mi. E. of Basalt, Colo. Read full story here.
07-28-13 BUFORD, GA Man arrested in Lake Lanier boating accident Officers with the DNR are investigating an accident on Lake Lanier at Shoal Creek on Sun. (07-28). According to Sgt. Mike Burgamy, a boater pulling a tube with 2 people in it made a left turn and slung the tube into another boat, which was reported to be stationary. "One subject received injuries and was complaining of chest and leg pain. He was transported to Gwinnett Medical," Burgamy said. The operator of the moving boat, 37-y/o Andrew Ross Lockey of Buford, was arrested for BUI and reckless operation. Read full story here.
07-27-13 MORGAN COUNTY, MO Boaters Transported to Hospital After Inhaling Carbon Monoxide Two women were transported to the hosp. after inhaling CO fumes while boating on Lake of the Ozarks Sat. night (07-27), according to the Missouri State Highway Patrol.
Erin Mulder, 30, of Lake St. Louis, and Kristen Mulder, 31, of St. Louis, were both rendered unconscious after inhaling CO fumes emitted by the boat they were in as they traveled at low speeds down the lake.
Both women were transported to Lake Regional Hosp. by ambulance with minor injuries. The driver of the boat was uninjured. Read full story here.
07-27-13 WINTER HAVEN, FL Boating Crash Leaves Winter Haven Boy Gravely Injured A 10-y/o boy remains in extremely grave condition after an inner tube being towed behind a PWC crashed into a dock, the Polk Co. Sheriff's Office said Sun. (07-28). The crash Sat. (07-27) on Lake Lulu also critically injured a 31-y/o man and a 9-y/o boy. Hunter Gonzalez, 10, of Winter Haven, was airlifted to Tampa Gen. Hosp. with injuries described as grave. The boy's condition was not expected to improve, Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Donna Wood said Sun. evening. David Landazuri, 31, of Majestic Gardens Lane, Winter Haven, remained in critical condition Sun. at Lakeland Regional Med. Center. Javier Nunez, 9, of Vero Beach, was taken from Winter Haven Hosp. to Tampa General, where he was stable Sun., the Sheriff's Office said. About 12:30 p.m. on Sat., Juan Nunez, 28, of Majestic Gardens Lane, Winter Haven, was pulling an inner tube behind a Polaris PWC on Lake Lulu.
Nunez made a right turn, sending the inner tube and the 3 passengers crashing into a dock. The crash appeared to be an accident, and impairment did not appear to be a factor, the Sheriff's Office said.
07-28-13 LINCOLN COUNTY, NC Firefighters rescue 2 after canoe overturns in flooded South Fork River Firefighters had to rescue 2 people who were stuck in the flooded South Fork River in Lincoln Co. Emergency management crews sent a rescue boat to bring the victims to safety Sun. night (07-28) after their canoe overturned. The 2 were found clinging to a tree in the water when firefighters arrived at about 8 p.m. They said they had been floating down the river for fun.Read full story here.
07-28-13 RIPLEY COUNTY, MO Man Dies After Canoe Flips on Current River A man died Sun. (07-28) on the Current River, 5 mi. N. of the U.S. 160 bridge, after his canoe overturned, according to the Missouri State Highway Patrol. Stephen Hill, 57, of Paragould, Arkansas was in the back of a 2-seat canoe when it struck a root wad and overturned. Hill and another occupant of the canoe were ejected into the river. The other occupant, unnamed in the report, was able to swim to shore. Hill was pronounced dead at 12:50 p.m. at Ripley Co. Memorial Hosp. Read full story here.
07-26-13 MIDDLE FORK SALMON RIVER, ID Kayak accident claims local doctor Family and friends are grieving the loss of Maj StormoGipson, 57, who died Fri. (07-26) in a tragic kayaking accident while with her family on the Middle Fork of the Salmon River. According to an email message circulated by family members and friends, StormoGipson, a pediatrician at the Valley Young People's Clinic in Spokane Valley, was in the 5th day of a 6-day wilderness whitewater rafting vacation when the tragedy struck. Because the rapids on that stretch of the river were expected to be relatively mild, StormoGipson decided to join other family members in riding them out in inflatable kayaks. Read full story here.

VANCOUVER, WA WA gets tough on Boating Under the Influence Penalties for Boating Under the Influence just increased in a big way in Washington State. Not only have fines for BUI shot up five-fold, from $1,000 to $5,000, but if a marine deputy asks for a boater to blow into a Breathalyzer and he or she refuses, that person will be fined. "If they refuse to provide that breath sample, now we can ticket them with a $1,000 civil penalty," said Todd Baker a marine deputy with the Clark Co.  Sheriff's Dept. According to Washington State Park data, alcohol is a factor in just over 30% of boating fatalities. Prior to Sun. (07-28), Washington's BUI law was not very tough. "Boating Under the Influence was just a misdemeanor. You could compare that to trespassing or theft of a shopping cart. But now it's a gross misdemeanor with serious consequences," said Baker. The law also gives marine officers the ability to issue citations for boating accidents.  It's authority they've always had on land, but now also have it on the water. The law was also updated to include marijuana references. If a blood test shows someone is over the legal limit of THC, he or she will get slapped with boating under the influence, just as if the person were drunk. Read full story here.

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