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Long Island Boating accident tonight:2 dead

Old 10-05-2009, 03:14 PM
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Condolences to the families
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Old 10-05-2009, 03:35 PM
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very sad day. prayers to all the families.
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Old 10-05-2009, 04:15 PM
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More details from

A speedboat went under a bridge at a "high rate of speed" moments before crashing onto marshland south of Seaford, killing the operator, his wife and a friend and leaving four others critically hurt, police said Monday.

Nassau police said investigators are looking at excessive speed, alcohol and debris in the water as possible factors in the early Sunday night crash of the 40-foot high performance powerboat, in which all seven occupants were ejected.

Witnesses told police they had seen the boat, named Uncanni, speeding under the Goose Creek Bridge on the Wantagh Parkway. The speed limit at the bridge is 5 mph. Police said there is no posted limit in the channel.

PHOTOS: Powerboat crashes off Wantagh

The crash occurred at the southwest corner of Goose Island, a small marsh island at the northern end of Great Channel - an area east of Great Island and the Wantagh State Parkway.

The channel is between 8 and 33 feet deep, but has shallows that suddenly see depths fall to just one or two feet, according to a nautical chart.

Citing notification of kin, police have not released the names of the dead and injured, but identified the deceased as the boat operator, 65, his wife, 46, and a 50-year-old man from Massapequa.

The boat is registered to Theresa A. Maniaci of Lagoon Drive West in Copiague. Her husband is listed in records as George Canni.

Neighbors and friends identified Maniaci and Canni as the couple killed in the accident.

Joe Logiudice, owner of Hustler Powerboats in Calverton, said he built the boat about 10 years ago and sold it to Canni, who he has known for 40 years. Logiudice said the boat was a diesel boat that wasn't that fast, with a top speed of 60 to 65.

Calling Canni a "meticulous and careful" boater, Logiudice said he was stunned by the accident and couldn't understand how it could happen.

"I can't get my hands around it," Logiudice said. "They've gone that way a hundred times. He knew the area and he knew the boat."

The injured are a man, 54, from Farmingdale; a woman, 50, whose husband was one of those killed; and a woman, 54, and her husband, 48, police said.

The 54-year-old woman suffered head trauma and bleeding on the brain, police said, while the 50-year-old woman suffered fractured vertebrae, as did the 48-year-old man. The 54-year-old man from Farmingdale, who was not part of a couple, suffered fractures in both legs.

"We don't know where they left from yesterday evening," Nassau police Det. Lt. Kevin Smith said, "and where they were going."

The crash occurred at 7:15 p.m., police said. Tide tables indicate high tide at nearby Jones Inlet was at 8:16 p.m.

Investigators said the boat ended up between 75 and 100 feet inland on the marsh - and said it had mud caked on both sides of the hull and a vertical crack to the cockpit area.

None of the occupants were wearing life jackets, police said.

All were ejected from the boat and were found in the marsh area, police said.

Goose Creek Bridge is the second of three bridges on the Wantagh, which connects the mainland to Jones Beach.

On Sunday night, the accident area was incorrectly identified as Seaman's Creek - a narrow, shallow waterway north of Great Island.

Rescuers from at least four agencies, among them Sea Tow, the bay constable, the Nassau Police Marine Unit and the U.S. Coast Guard, joined in the rescue effort, plucking victims from the marsh and airlifting two to hospitals.

Smith said Sunday he did not know how fast the boat had been traveling, but he added: "To hit the marsh and run up on top of it like that, you would have to be going at a pretty good rate of speed."

Investigators will attempt to use mathematical formulas to reconstruct the accident and determine the approximate speed at the time of the crash.

The crash remains under investigation by homicide detectives, Smith said.

The boat's captain was dead when rescuers arrived, Smith said. The second man was pronounced dead at Nassau University Medical Center in East Meadow, hospital spokeswoman Shelley Lotenberg said.

The captain's wife was pronounced dead at another hospital, authorities said.

The other four victims were in critical condition at Nassau University Medical Center.

Capt. Alan Bregman of Sea Tow Freeport, a marine towing franchise, said one of his captains, John Duryea, called authorities to report the accident and then found a missing person in the marshland.

Though there was a high tide, Bregman said the water did not rise high enough to hide the marshland grass.

Two of the boat's occupants were initially missing but were found in the marshland.

"The difficulty of it was the location of the boat and it was night time," Wantagh Fire Department spokesman Harry Loud said. "You can't get to the boat."

As helicopters from the Coast Guard, New York Police Department and Nassau Police Department buzzed over the marsh Sunday night, ambulances, police cars and fire trucks gathered at the Wantagh Park Marina, which served as a staging area for the rescue operation. Nassau police sent two boats and divers to the scene.

Two passengers were able to climb into a boat before being taken to a hospital. The four others were airlifted.

Bregman said the crew on one of his towboats pulled the Hustler off the marsh island late Sunday. It was towed to the Nassau Police Marine Bureau headquarters at Bay Park in East Rockaway.

With staff writer Mark Harrington.
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Old 10-05-2009, 04:33 PM
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Very sad . I wish for a full recovery for the survivors.

Here is the latest news clip
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Old 10-05-2009, 04:38 PM
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Very sad and tragic. Means even more when it happens in a place I see al the time. As all of us South Shore Long Island boaters know, its real easy to end up in the weeds. Careful or not, it can happen to anyone. Especially in the dark. I personally dont remember seeing a 40' Hustler w/ diesels . Anyone have a picture of the boat?

Last edited by Vinny P; 10-05-2009 at 04:42 PM.
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Old 10-05-2009, 05:41 PM
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Vid. shows boat-

very sad indeed !
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Old 10-05-2009, 05:56 PM
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Very sad ...RIP
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Old 10-05-2009, 06:09 PM
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Very bad news.......My condolences & prayers to all involved.
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Old 10-05-2009, 06:31 PM
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OMG what a sad sad tragedy... Prayers for those involved and their families.
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Old 10-05-2009, 06:34 PM
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