Table Rock Lake tragedy | Duck boat recovered from the lake

Video Mourners remember victims of 'duck boat' tragedy

Branson Mayor Karen Best speaks at a community wide memorial service on Sunday, July 22, 2018 at College of the Ozarks in Point Lookout, Missouri for the families, friends and victims of the duck boat tragedy on Table Rock Lake.

The boat sank during a sudden storm Thursday at Table Rock Lake in the tourism town. The boat reached the surface about half an hour later after being pulled from about 80 feet of water. The process to lift the boat and tow it to shore involved several divers, a barge crane and water pumps.

The U.S. Coast Guard said the boat that sank was built in 1944 and has passed an inspection in February, the Kansas City Star reported.

The NTSB, which will determine the causes of the accident, will look into what the boat operators knew about the weather forecast before taking the boat out.

Tia Coleman, who lost nine family members including her husband and three children, told a news conference on Saturday from a Branson hospital that she does not know how she will recover from the loss.

Coleman wept at times as she described trying to help her family and save herself on Saturday. She said the captain of the boat told them they wouldn't need life preservers.

Ratliff said she could not immediately answer a question about why more of the NTSB recommendations were not put into place after the 2001 NTSB report.

The report also said the crew did not require life jackets to be worn and did not demonstrate how to don one if needed.

He said the firm presented engineering experts who showed how the vehicles were actually engineered to fail in a water emergency, their canopies trapping passengers in their life jackets rather than allowing their escape.

Life jackets were on the boat, but there is no regulation mandating that duck boat passengers wear them, Pattison said Friday. "They would not have been trapped inside the vehicle, and fewer passengers might have been killed", the report said.

Fellow survivor, Talyssa Mann, a 19-year-old from Carlsbad, New Mexico, said Coleman's statement about life jackets was correct.




"I said, 'Lord, please, I've got to get to my babies".

Nine of the victims were the Colemans.

Tia also described Evan, her youngest son, as being "extremely smart, quick and witty", and she said her 1-year-old daughter, Arya, had "1,000 personalities wrapped in one".

"My feeling after seeing this one is that the only thing to do in the name of public safety is to ban them", Hall told USA Today. At least 39 people have died in duck boat accidents in the past 20 years.

Others killed included 65-year-old William Bright and his wife, Janice, 63, of Higginsville, Mo.

After the deadly sinking in Arkansas in 1999, the National Transportation Safety Board recommended doing away with the canopies and adding more floatation capacity so duck boats could remain upright and keep floating even if they took on water.

Missouri State Highway Patrol chaplain Steve Martin said the family's survival was "remarkable" and that there is no explanation for it.

Another survivor was 12-year-old Alicia Dennison of IL, who said her grandmother, Leslie Dennison, 64, saved her from drowning.

Paul said the duck boats he inspected - which the company had just purchased or repaired - vented exhaust from the motor out front and below the water line. Words can not convey how profoundly our hearts are breaking.

She praised the people who tried to save others from drowning, calling them "heroes who did everything in their power to save lives".

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