LAKE HAVASU CITY — Proper use of life jackets and an engine cutoff lanyard prevented the potential drowning of three boaters after their speeding boat flipped over on Lake Havasu earlier this month.
Deputies from the Mohave County Sheriff’s Office responded to an accident that ejected all occupants from a boat around 10 a.m. June 20 on Lake Havasu. The 36-foot Skater vessel was traveling at an estimated 80 to 100 mph and when the operator made a hard left turn. All three people aboard were ejected. The operator,56-year-old Larry Guillen of Huntington Beach, Calif., was transported to Havasu Regional Medical Center for a severe head laceration and the two passengers — Bradly Stewart, 40, and Anthony Nelson, 28, both of Lake Havasu City — refused medical treatment for minor injuries, according to the Mohave County Sheriff’s Office.
“This incident could have been deadly, if all of the occupants were not wearing life jackets and the operator was not wearing the safety engine cutoff lanyard,” said Tim Baumgarten, Arizona Game and Fish Department boating law administrator. “All boaters and watercraft users should remember to operate their vessels safely and responsibly, including traveling at safe speeds. That operator is ultimately responsible for the safety of everyone aboard.”
The U.S. Coast Guard reported that in 2016 there were 4,463 recreational boating accidents, involving 701 deaths nationwide. In cases where the cause of death was known, 80 percent of fatal boating accident victims drowned and of those, 83 percent were…
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