Questions over duck boat tragedy that killed 17

Jul 22, 2018, 01:12
Questions over duck boat tragedy that killed 17

Two adults were in critical condition, while the others were being treated for minor injuries, a Cox Medical Center spokesperson told CBS News.

Looking for a fun activity, we boarded the Ride the Ducks boat. The company offers refunds in cases where severe weather impedes tours, according to its website.

Seventeen people died when an amphibious duck boat, a vehicle operated by Branson's Ride the Ducks, became caught on Table Rock Lake during a violent storm, and eventually capsized and sank. High winds had hit the area, according to weather reports.

Gov. Parson said the main focus of the investigation is to unite the families and give them the resources needed.

The company who owns the capsized boat, Ripley Entertainment, added Branson's "Ride the Ducks" attraction to its roster a year ago.

He said the incident was caused by heavy winds, saying the tour boat had been making its way to land.

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Gerald Dworkin, a consultant for Lifesaving Resources, an aquatics safety training firm in ME, said, "Even if they were wearing a life jacket when the boat went down, unless they could evacuate through the side windows they would've been trapped by that canopy". Local media outlets have also reported that a longtime couple from St. Louis County, a married couple from Higginsville, a father and son from Arkansas and a grandmother who saved her 12-year-old granddaughter were among the deceased. "When that boat is found, all those life jackets are going to be in there". They're devastated about other sightseers being killed during the storm while they made it back safely.

At this time, the captain pointed out the location of the life jackets on the vessel, she said, but told the passengers, "Don't worry about it, you won't need it".

The National Transportation Safety Board and US Coast Guard are investigating.

A relative who was not aboard the duck boat shared a photo with Atlanta's WSB-TV that includes several of the family members who died.

Coleman said she was trapped inside the boat, but managed to swim to shore.

Brayden Malaske, from Oklahoma, said no one was anxious when they first got on the boats, but it "suddenly got very dark". The trip around the usually calm lake is quick, he said.

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A microburst is a severe, localised wind gust, blasting down from a thunderstorm, typically covering an area less than 4km in diameter and lasting less than five minutes.

"You know, they have a very good record", he added about the Ride the Ducks company.

There was actually another duck boat on the water at the time.

Thirteen people died in 1999 when a boat sank near Hot Springs, Arkansas.

Duck boats were originally used by the USA military in World War II to transport troops and supplies, and later were modified for use as sightseeing vehicles.

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