DANIA BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) - Rescuers responding to a boat accident pulled two bodies from the water off the coast of Dania Beach but rescued one person.
According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, the male victims’ boat overturned about a mile off Dania Beach, Tuesday afternoon. “Two subjects are deceased as a result of this capsized vessel,” said FWC spokesperson Carol Lyn Parrish.
Fort Lauderdale Fire Rescue and the Coast Guard both responded to the scene at around 2:30 p.m. Tuesday.
7Skyforce HD hovered above as rescuers pulled the bodies onto a boat. Debris could be seen in the water, and it appeared the entire vessel was completely submerged.
Nearby boaters saw the 22-foot vessel in distress and were able to rescue the surviving victim and take him to a U.S. Coast Guard station. “There was a secondary vessel on scene, almost immediately after the incident, that was able to recover one subject out of the water, who is the only one that is here with us today,” said Fort Lauderdale Fire Rescue Capt. Stephen Gollan.
The third victim was conscious and speaking with FWC investigators.
Rescue divers searched the sunken boat for signs of other victims but gave the all clear after the surviving victim told them there were only three people on board. “Our divers did then check the vessel for any remaining [victims],” said Gollan. “Once we were given a number by the one survivor, at that time, we cleared the call.”
The surviving victim confirmed with investigators that there were only two other people on the boat at the time it capsized.
Officials said it remains unclear what caused the boat to go under. They have not released the victims’ names or ages.
Crews later towed the vessel back to shore.
While FWC continues to investigate, officials said this is a painful reminder about water safety, days before Memorial Day weekend. “This is just very difficult to see, injuries and fatalities with boating incidents,” said Broward Sheriff Fire Rescue spokesperson Mike Jachles. “We want people to enjoy the holidays, but above all, be safe and be smart.”
Officials have not determined whether the windy conditions were a factor in the boat’s capsizing.
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