One man was injured after he and two others were ejected from their fishing boat in a bizarreboat accident near Freeport last week.
The fishermen were on their boat in Choctawhatchee Bay when they apparently hit a sunken boat between the south side of the bay and Basin Bayou. According to the Northwest Florida Daily News, their 13-foot boat, a Boston whaler, ran into a 150-foot boat known as “Liberty” that is partially sunken in the area.
Their boat apparently hit a piece of jagged steel sticking up out of the water. It was low tide when the accident occurred.
The three fishermen, ages 28, 37 and 43, respectively, were ejected upon impact. The Freeport Fire Department chief tells the Daily News that the men were in the water for “some time” but were able to call 911 for help. They apparently had waterproof pouches around their necks.
Thanks to the quick thinking of a local seafood restaurant owner, the men were saved. First responders reportedly set up a command post at the restaurant. The owner says he knows the area well and figured he could get to the men with his boat faster than rescue workers could. So that’s what he did.
The men were able to get back into their boat after they were rescued. One of them was taken to Sacred Heart Hospital on the Emerald Coast for his injuries. The nature and extent of his injuries were not reported.
The restaurant owner says it’s not the first time that a boat has hit the sunken ship.
Source: Northwest Florida Daily News, “One injured in boat crash caused by sunken vessel,” Angel McCurdy, Nov. 3, 2011