AUG. 20 — Eight people, including three children, sustained minor to severe injuries when two boats collided in Great South Bay, on the south shore of New York’s Long Island.
Five of the eight aboard were thrown from the vessels – 25 and 23 feet – after the head-on collision, according the Coast Guard. One child reportedly suffered serious injuries and a man sustained a serious laceration above his right eyebrow. The incident took place Aug. 11.
The crew of a passing tour boat, Lauren Kristy, a 65-foot turn-of-the-century styled paddleboat, rescued two of the five boaters from the water, the Islip Harbor Police Department rescued two others, and the fifth was able to climb back onto one of the damaged boats, according to the Coast Guard.
It’s unknown whether any of the five ejected boaters were wearing life jackets, according to the Coast Guard. There were reportedly 2-foot seas and 10-knot winds at the time of the accident. Upon rescue, all eight people were taken to the Bay Shore Marina and at 10:30 p.m., an awaiting EMS took them to SouthsideHospital in Bay Shore. While the boats were seriously damaged, there were no reports of oil or fuel pollution in the water and they were towed to the Bay Shore Marina.
“Boaters should exercise extreme caution while traveling at night,” says Mark Averill, Coast Guard Sector Long Island Sound duty watch officer in a press release. “It’s best to keep a slower speed that would enable one to quickly maneuver to avoid other boaters, and by all means, wear a life preserver.”
Suffolk County Police Department is conducting an investigation.
— Elizabeth Ellis