A 17-year-old boy is dead and five teens are injured after a boating collision on Middle River near Northeast 18 th Court in Ft. Lauderdale on Wednesday, Aug. 12, 2015.
The five injured victims are all under 18, three remain in critical condition at Broward Health Medical Center while two others suffered minor injuries.
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Investigators are unsure if speed was a factor, though the teens on board said they did not feel unsafe at the speed they were going. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation (FWC) is aware that two of the teens were standing at the time of the accident.
The bridge the teens crashed into is known for being too low to go under during high tide. The FWC also noted that the teens crashed into a part of the bridge on the south fork of the river, which is dark and not lit.
The teens were on a 13-foot Boston Whaler around midnight when the collision occurred. None of the teens owned the boat, but the driver did have permission to use the vessel and had a valid boater safety identification card.
One local man says he saw a speeding boat pass by from his third-floor balcony overlooking the south fork. Investigators will be looking at physical evidence, including testimony from those on board and any potential witnesses.
The tragedy is yet another incident involving teens and boating in South Florida. On July 4, a 17-year-old was hospitalized after being involved in a boat accident. Additionally, the parents of Perry Cohen and Austin Stephanos still do not have answers follow the two teens disappearance.
Our thoughts are with all the families and friends impacted by these boating tragedies.