Accident Reports

Hit and Run Boating On the Rise

bost accident

Sailboat dismasted by a speeding  powerboat at night in North Carolina.

North Carolina

On the night of November 6, Coast Guard crews responded to a collision between a power boat and a sailboat on the Intracoastal Waterway near Broad Creek, in North Carolina. The sailboat was safely towed to a nearby harbor. However, the powerboat fled the scene.

Luckily there were no injuries. Authorities are saying to be on the lookout for for a blue center console that's about 25 feet with a T-top. The vessel most likely has damage to the starboard side.


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A 45’ high-powered cruiser which was allegedly part of the accident.

In July, on Lake Winnebago a commercial stern-wheel pleasure cruise paddleboat with 43 passengers and crew sustained severe damage to the port side when it was struck by a private 45-foot powerboat carrying seven total occupants. The sheriff's office said several people on board the paddleboat were injured.

The operator of a 45-foot powerboat fled the scene after the collision, making no attempt to render any aid to the paddleboat or its occupants.

Several days later, a 52-year-old Oshkosh man was identified and taken into custody for 12 counts of Recklessly Endangering Safety 2nd Degree (Class G Felony) and 11 counts of Failure to Render Aid after a Boating Accident (Misdemeanor). He appeared in court Wednesday. On Thursday, the sheriff's office said investigators have identified all seven occupants of the powerboat.

"This has been a lengthy and ongoing process, and we are still feverishly looking to speak with all 43 occupants of the paddleboat," the sheriff's office said in a news release Thursday. "While we believe we have identified and attempted to contact everyone who was listed on the manifest, thus far we have been unsuccessful in speaking with everyone."

Washington State

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Evening cruise ends in disaster of Lake Washington.

In August, the Seattle Fire Department responded to a report of two boats colliding on Lake Washington, according to the SFD. At about 9:30 p.m., water rescue responded to a report of two boats colliding near the 800 block of Lake Washington Boulevard.

Seven people from one of the boats were accounted for by 9:45 p.m. When medics arrived on the scene, the second boat involved in the collision was no longer at the scene.

The driver of the first boat, Ted Dominguez, told KIRO 7 he was showing several out-of-town friends the area Saturday night, moments before the boat crash.

“And all of a sudden, this boat just came on top of me,” Dominguez said. “It was like a big shadow.” Five adult women were transported to a nearby hospital in stable condition. “One person got a good little slit in their head. And so, I was like I need to get them to somebody where they can help us,” Dominguez said.

Two adult men were also on board his boat but did not need medical treatment.

Dominguez claims the other boat didn’t have its lights on when this happened. He says the other boat stopped, then took off from the scene.

“It stopped. And then, they just pushed forward and I was like … no,” Dominguez said. “But for them, for somebody to run us over like that and this late … is not … they know what they did.”

New Jersey 

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Remains of a pontoon boat involved in a hit-and-run accident.

A couple and their dog, taking a moonlit boat ride on a lake Hopatcong in New Jersey, were nearly killed when another boat collided with theirs and then kept going. The couple, Lisa Pechmiller and Jon Richman, were enjoying Lake Hopatcong, normally the picture of tranquility on a summer evening.

But just after dark Monday, Pechmiller and Richman found themselves propelled into disaster. "I've never come this close to death in my life," Pechmiller said.

"It was like being in a movie set and I'm the stunt man," Richman said. Pechmiller said she yelled out to Richman, telling him that the boat was headed right for them. "And a voice in my head yelled 'duck' really loud," Richman said.

"The next thing I know, I'm flying through the air and the dog flying and we hit the floor of the pontoon boat," Pechmiller said. "I just yelled to Jon, I said, 'He didn't stop. He didn't stop.' He didn't know if he killed us or not, he just kept going."

The boat just sped off. Richman was able to follow for a bit, but then the crippled pontoon sputtered to a stop. It was heavily damaged from an impact that could have been even worse. The other boat was so close, Richman says its propeller grazed his back before speeding away.

"Did not alter his course did not alter his speed," Richman said. New Jersey State Police have released an image of a boat that looks like the one that slammed into Pechmiller and Richman.

It's almost inconceivable that the runaway boat, having caused so much damage, wasn't damaged itself.

Troopers hope someone spots it and helps solve a hit-and-run that could have been deadly.

A Tragic Death in Maryland

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The Magothy River in Maryland, scene of a tragic hit-and-run death on July 3th.

An outing to watch fireworks turned deadly in Anne Arundel County on the magothy River north of Annapolis the evening of July 3th. . Police said a hit-and-run boat crash on the river killed a woman and now police are searching for the operator responsible.

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The police boat used in the investigation.

The boat that caused the crash is a white center-console vessel that is roughly 25 to 30 feet long, authorities said. A Facebook post said the suspect fled and was last seen boating into Deep Creek in Cape St. Claire.

Police arrested a man four days later on Friday in connection with a fatal boating hit-and-run last month. Maryland Natural Resources Police said officers arrested Brownell Edds Jr., 48, of Cape St. Claire, on negligent manslaughter by vessel and criminally negligent manslaughter by vessel charges.

The charges stem from a boating collision on July 3 on the Magothy River that killed Laura Slattery, 63, of Pasadena, who was on the boat with her husband.

"Our investigators and the state's attorney's office worked meticulously and diligently to make this arrest," NRP Superintendent Col. Adrian Baker said in a statement. "This is a tragic case, and we send our deepest sympathies to Laura Slattery's family. We hope this arrest brings them closure as they navigate this difficult time."

Slattery's husband was injured and family members said another boating family helped them get back to the shore after the crash.

Our Take-Away

Most of these accident occurred at night, but all involved powerboats going far too fast for the conditions. In addition, the offending powerboats were not keeping a proper lookout.  

It should be noted that in two of the five accidents noted above, the culprit was tracked down later by police.