Boat sinks, five hurt in crash on Lake Murray, S.C.

Updated: May. 31, 2021 at 9:49 AM EDT
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LAKE MURRAY, S.C. (WIS) - A boat crash on Lake Murray sent five people to the hospital and sank one of the boats involved, officials said.

It happened near Susie Ebert Island around 10:30 p.m. Friday but crews were on the scene until 3 a.m. Saturday, the Department of Natural Resources confirmed.

Officials said a pontoon boat hit a cabin cruiser.

The pontoon had six people on board and crews rushed five of them to the hospital. Officials have not shared their conditions.

“We do have an officer who is remaining in contact with the hospital and some of the family members to keep abreast of what’s going on in the conditions,” Sgt. Hunter Robinson with SCDNR said.

The cabin cruiser had two people on board who had to be rescued before the boat sank. Those people were not hurt, officials said.

Crews towed the pontoon boat to a marina where it is being stored. The cabin cruiser is on the bottom of the lake at the crash site and SCDNR will recover it soon.

“We are in the process of making plans to get that boat lifted, but this is Memorial Day weekend and that is a very busy area,” Robinson said. It would just be an evidence collection and boat recovery type thing, because everyone is accounted for from the crash. So we’re working on that to try and be safe for our divers and everyone involved.”

Investigators are looking into how the crash happened, but officials said alcohol does not appear to have been involved.

Robinson offered advice to boaters to stay safe on the water.

“It is dangerous,” he said. “Even if you’re doing the right thing, everybody’s doing the right thing, there’s a lot of people out there. Be extra vigilant, especially at night to keep a good lookout, you know, for other boats and lights in the area because there are a lot of boats, there’s a lot of lights on the land. It just takes a good, designated driver to stay vigilant and keep an eye out.”

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