Monday, December 21, 2009
San Diego's U.S. Coast Guard captain says his crew is cooperating with federal transportation investigators to determine who is at fault for a deadly boat collision that took place over the weekend in San Diego Bay.
The crash killed an eight-year-old boy. Also, two children and three adults were seriously injured.
Captain Thomas Farris expressed his condolences to the family members and victims. The accident took place during San Diego Bay's annual holiday boat parade.
Farris says five of his officers were responding to an incident when their ship collided into a smaller boat carrying 13 passengers. He says there has never been an accident like this in San Diego waters before. He promised the families he would get to the bottom of what happened.
“The crew that was involved in this mishap has been removed from active search and rescue duty and is continuing with their service in an administrative capacity,” Farris said. “They are obviously concerned and upset by what happened. I would ask for your patience as we move forward with the investigations.”
Farris did admit it was the Coast Guard ship that was moving at high speeds. Just how fast is still not certain.
The National Transportation Safety Board is looking into the matter. Four investigators are in San Diego conducting interviews and collecting evidence. The agency's Peter Knudson says investigators will be looking for GPS data or radar signals that tracked both vessels.
“Electronic evidence plays an increasingly large role in our investigations, but we don't hold any one thing to give us the key to the cause of the accident. We look at everything,” Knudson said.
Investigators will issue a series of safety mandates based on their conclusions.