I am saddened by the news.
I also wonder about the condition of the woman, but nowadays you can tell the hospital to NOT release any information about you. This may be the case for whatever reason. I hope she is going to be well.
As far as the tirades against and about boat wakes and such, it is simply a part of the world of boating. Just like when you just get through washing your car and pull out on a nice day to find mud stripes across the road from a concrete truck...
I run cruisers.
I run performance boats.
I run little high speed outboards.
I run PWCs.
I assure you that you can (should be able to) tell when there's a big cruiser wake ahead. As many times as I have actively sought them out, I promise that they are easy to spot. If you like jumping big air (like me) then you know how to make your adjustments coming up on them. If you don't like jumping big air, then you need to know how to change your approach/speed/angle to get them behind you as easily as possible.
I, for one, love big boat wakes cause I love to jump them. You may one day read about me in a wake jumping accident because I realize that nothing is guaranteed in this life. I don't know if the AO intended to launch, or if it was inadvertent, but there is no good reason for him to have NOT seen or noticed the boat wake. I understand that he is an experienced boater (from earlier posts) and make no guesses as to the cause of the event. But I tend to shy away from BLAMING the cruiser operator, clueless or not (and it sounds like he WAS clueless if he did not stop to help).
I am sad to hear of the loss of a quality individual in a boating accident. But it was an accident. Could he have done something differently to have affected the outcome? Of course, just as is th case in every motor vehicle accident. But second guessing now does nothing. To use this event as a learning experience for the rest of us may be helpful though.
As far as cruiser wakes, there certainly IS a law regarding damage, injury, and loss of property due to boat wakes. The issue, though, is that the TEETH of this law require that it be shown that the cruiser (or offending boat wake maker) be irresponsibly producing a dangerous wake for the conditions at the time. There are lots of factors involved there.
If the cruiser is in the channel/open waters, and is farther than the required distance from no wake zones, docks, other boats, swimming areas, etc. then it is difficult to show irresponsibility regardless of what kind of plowhog he is being.
I have MANY MANY MANY times, been running between 30 and 40 in my cruiser and all of a sudden come across a guy in a 9' jon boat tied to a tree branch 3 feet off a rock bluff right in the channel. Jon Boats are usually duckhunter green and are dang hard to spot. The guy is usually wearing a black tee shirt, too. I ALWAYS chop the sticks and try to get the water calm for him, but they still usually curse you up one side and down the other. I never run at plow speeds (unless it is specifically for a pack of jetskis), and never run fast in residential fingers, even when they are plenty wide and busy. There are boats (like some mentioned in some previous posts) who decide to raft together IN THE CHANNEL IN THE MIDDLE OF THE LAKE. I see them often. If I am "going somewhere" (which means I am running 30) then sometimes I bear to the opposite side of the channel and rock on. If they have no better sense than to choose that location to park, then they'd better know how to tie together securely.
contd next post