Thu. Mar 23rd, 2023
Sunday marked the 2-year anniversary of the Duck Boat tragedy in Branson on Table Rock Lake.
On July 19th in 2018, a severe thunderstorm caused a duck boat with 31 people to sink, killing 17 people including 9 members of one family.
Robert Mongeluzzi, an attorney in one of the cases.
He tells KY 3 TV the accident could have been avoided if they operators would have followed guidelines released by the NTSB following a similar situation in 1999.
Several lawsuits have already been settled and the criminal case against the Duck Boat captain remains ongoing.
The sheriff’s department identified the Indiana family members who died as 45-year-old Angela Coleman, 1-year-old Arya Coleman, 69-year-old Belinda Coleman, 76-year-old Ervin Coleman, 7-year-old Evan Coleman, 40-year-old Glenn Coleman, 70-year-old Horace Coleman, 2-year-old Maxwell Coleman, and 9-year-old Reece Coleman.
The Missouri residents who died were identified as 69-year-old William Asher, 68-year-old Rosemarie Hamann, 63-year-old Janice Bright, 65-year-old William Bright, and the crew member operating the boat, 73-year-old Bob Williams.
Also killed were 64-year-old Leslie Dennison of Illinois, and 53-year-old Steve Smith and his son, 15-year-old Lance Smith, both from Arkansas.
Senator Roy Blunt released a statement on the anniversary.
“Today we remember the 17 victims who lost their lives in the Duck Boat tragedy at Table Rock Lake, and the loved ones who are missing them every day. We owe it to these families to do everything we can to make sure a tragedy like this one never happens again. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has rightfully called on the U.S. Coast Guard, and owners and operators, to immediately implement safety recommendations for duck boats, including removing canopies. The Coast Guard should follow that action by moving quickly to issue regulations in compliance with NTSB recommendations. Senator Hawley and I have also introduced a bill that would make previously-issued NTSB recommendations federal law. I urge all of our colleagues to support that effort to improve safety and protect lives.”
A deeper look into the story from our News Partner CBS can be found here.