Airboat crash leaves 14 people injured, officials say

- Rescuers say nine people were taken to the hospital after an airboat crash at around 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday.

"We got a call about a commercial airboat tour that had had an accident," explained Officer Chad Weber with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. "We're not quite sure what took place. We're conducting an investigation."

An airboat was taken back on shore with a big dent in front, after wildlife officers said it crashed.  Fourteen people were injured, including two children. Two people were left in critical conditions and three in serious conditions.

"We're gonna see if it was operator error, equipment failure.  The who, what, where, when and why of why this happened."

Officers say a total of 15 people were on board, including the boat operator from Tom and Jerry's Airboat Rides.

"There's seating in the front and the driver typically drives from the back."

One person was taken to the hospital by helicopter.

"Wish everyone a speedy recovery and they're in our thoughts and prayers," said Officer Weber.

The manager at Tom and Jerry's Airboat Rides said they were cooperating with investigators and that no one was ejected from the airboat. They said one employee went to the hospital but was released and is doing ok. 
 

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