According to FWC Officer Jeremy Birchfield, both boats were fishing in Boca Grande Pass and when the operators of the first vessel, two brothers in their mid-teens, brought the boat up on plane they lost sight of the second vessel and collided with it.
The younger brother, William Waterhouse, 14, of Briarcliff, New York, was operating the 26-foot, 330 HP vessel at the time and was cited for a navigation rule violation (improper lookout), according to Birchfield. That violation carries a $90 fine.
Birchfield said that a local man and woman were operating the second vessel and that the woman was taken to a nearby hospital because of pain in her chest and neck.
As of two days after the accident, Birchfield said, she was still in the hospital undergoing tests.
Birchfield added that the two brothers operating the cited vessel had “boater safety cards,” which is all that is required.
The left bow of the second vessel was also seriously damaged when struck by the first.
No further information was available. In response to a request for the incident report, the FWC said it was “under review by (their) Boating and Waterways office,” and hence unavailable as of press time.