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Crash on Ohio river / Dayton KY

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Old 06-30-2003, 11:01 PM
  #41
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I called 700 WLW talk radio today to try to defend us and they put me on hold I never got through!! I told them I wanted to explain a few things about these boats from our point of view he said we will try to get you moved up instead they kept letting the complainers talk I wanted to let them in on this thread and hopefully get a little proper info out there. OH well I am going to type a nice email tonight and forward it around the media here.
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Old 07-01-2003, 12:03 AM
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Dear Mr. Forgrave,

As an owner of a "Cigarette" stlye boat (we normally refer to ourselves as "performance boaters"), I would like to say that, as a community, we abhor and condemn the apparent actions of the driver of the offending boat involved in Friday night's accident on the Ohio River. By all accounts, this individual has shown a pattern of less-than-proper operation, and this recent incident underscores his irresponsibility in ways that defy common sense.

Our hearts and prayers go out to those innocent victims who were simply out for a pleasant evening cruise and have had their lives so dramatically interrupted. We hope and pray that they all make a speedy and complete recovery.

That being said, I'd also like to take this opportunity to defend performance boaters against those who may feel that we are all irresponsible and reckless. While every demographic group will contain a sufficient number of those who behave badly, I have come to learn over the years that performance boaters as a group tend to be considerably more aware of their surroundings and treat their behavior on the water far more seriously than most boaters. This is only logical, considering the nature of the boats we choose to own. We understand that anyone who is passed by a boat going faster than himself tends to regard the faster boater with some disdain - this is simply human nature. We enjoy our boating lifestyle, and we feel that those who choose to purchase and operate a houseboat, sailboat, cruiser, fishing boat, pontoon boat or whatever have every right to enjoy their boats in an atmosphere of safety and courtesy as well.

There will no doubt be an outcry for new laws or regulations to prevent future accidents of this nature, but the truth is that every law, statute, rule and/or regulation required to prevent such accidents is already on the books. The sad fact is that you simply cannot legislate human behavior.

Oh, that you could.

Chuck Sprague
Reading, PA

PS - For an enlightening look into how performance boaters feel about this accident, visit the "General Discussions" forum area of "OffshoreOnly.com" and view this thread: http://www.offshoreonly.com/forums/s...threadid=53302
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Old 07-01-2003, 12:08 AM
  #43
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Well said C, Allan and I are working on a list of email addresses do send around the city.
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Old 07-01-2003, 01:57 AM
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Nice job C....I wish I could be so brief....here is what I sent out to a bunch of local media. I encourage you all to send out e-mails as well.....


Dear news persons,

I will try to practice brevity, yet there is much to be said. Your attention to this matter is greatly appreciated. For those of you who know me, you understand my sincerity, for that I am grateful.

I openly hope and pray that the innocent victims of the hit-and-run boating accident last weekend on the Ohio River heal quickly, effortlessly and completely. As an avid boater I feel great horror when these situations occur, realizing that myself and loved ones could have been in harms way. However....blame is being cast upon the safest, most experienced group of boaters on our great waterways. The high performance boating group.

I have been boating my entire life. I am appalled, as are my fellow high performance boaters, at the actions of the driver who caused this horrific scene, then cowardly drove off into the night, leaving the injured for dead. Without question, no group of people, other than the victims and authorities themselves, have a greater sense of outrage than our group of boaters. Boats are life for us, and the river is our back yard. We use it, protect it, brag about it, respect it and love it. We finance it and cherish it. We feel it is a part of us....our lives revolve around it. We also are human beings first, and we want justice....this hit and run has taken place on our turf and we want the perpetrator prosecuted to the full extent of the law. Our waterways are safer without him, a stance we take with great resolve. However, we are getting hammered by the media and citizens due to the actions of someone we CLEARLY do not call our own. Infact, no one in our group of 20 or so even knows this boat. Rare for such a tight group.

In the 6 years I have been in high performance boating, there have been a total of zero accidents caused by any high performance boat on the Ohio River. Infact, I am told there has only been one accident of this sort in the last 10 plus years on the Ohio River. On the contrary, there are literally dozens of boating accidents each season on the river by smaller, quieter, slower, less flashy boats. Infact, just 3 weeks ago I pulled up to Schmidt Field ramp to find a severely damaged boat being escorted to the dock by Hamilton Country Water Patrol. It seems the driver had recklessly lodged the boat under the front of the Hooter's Resturant Barge for over 30 minutes!!....by some great miracle....every passenger survived, even the two 5 year olds on the boat.

I was appalled. Tremendous driver error almost resulting in death, yet I heard nothing on the TV, Radio or in the paper of this accident. It simply did not exist. However, a boat described as a "Cigarette Boat" or a "Go-Fast" boat is involved in an incident, and the town is in an uprage....even the talk shows are covering the matter. Why is this so, I ask? Where is the justice? Why the prejudice and condemnation to the safest and most experienced drivers on the River? On any waterway, in fact. It's a drastic disservice, to be slight.

We are a group of people from all walks of life, from all income levels. We are firefighters, business owners, dentists, mechanics, sales people, computer engineers, college students and the such. Men and women who share a great passion for water. We take pride in our safety record, as well as a the condition of our boats. We take our shoes off as we board our vessles....We consider boating a part of our life and are the most experienced operators on the water, as well as the safest. We carry more safety equpiment than is required by law. Several of us are professional race boat drivers, trained and skilled. We are well respected by those who know maritime matters and most of us have literally 1000's of hours of boating operation to our credit. As well, we are completely enraged by the actions of this cowardly boat driver. The guilty boat was traveling 40-45 miles an hour at impact. Seeing as over 80% of the boats on the water will exceed those speeds, we are clearly dealing with a stupidity/sobriety issue, not a high performance issue. Any reasonable mind can make this determination.

I have read voicestrous reports claiming our boats are worth up to $1 million each....when in reality, I know of only a small number of these boats locally that even exceed $100,000. We are not rich, snobby, self centered, dangerous lunatics as we have been projected. We are normal people who have families and homes and jobs and love our waterways and take great pride in our boats, river and passion. I ask that you please keep this in mind as you pass judgment on this terrible accident and remember that high performance boaters, by the numbers, facts and by the statements of many in the know, are the safest, most experienced and most seasoned operators on our waterways and take great pride in our record. Also, I ask that you understand that we do not know this boat or driver and we are outraged at his selfish, cowardly actions of leaving the scene and hope he is never able to cruise our waterways again.

I invite all media personnel to join me and my fellow high performance boaters any day you wish for an afternoon on the river and see first hand the quality of people we represent. We pray for the victims and will help as asked to be sure this criminal is caught and punished.

Thank you and have a wonderful day!

Last edited by Allan4; 07-01-2003 at 11:41 AM.
 
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Old 07-01-2003, 05:37 AM
  #45
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Allan and C-spray,
Well said by both. Unfortunately, I doubt to see a lot of media attention from "our" point of view. What typically goes unrealized by both the media the enforcement agencies, and the general public is the experience the typical performance boater has. Speaking of myself, and I'm willing to bet that most of you have a similar history, I began boating 22 years ago. I was 10. I grew up on small cruisers (25'). I spent my summers on Lake Erie.
I have learned from experience how quickly conditions on the water can change ( weather, traffic, wind, rising water causing faster running rivers, fog.)
Early on I gained alot of respect for the water, and still have a fear for it. Sound strange to be afraid of the water after 20 years experience? Maybe I should say a respect for the water.
The point I'm attempting to make is the fact that it is rare for someone to go out and purchase a performance boat of this caliber without years and years of experience on smaller boats. Look at our forum boards here. Someone is always looking to "move up" to the next boat. These moves are 99% of the time in small increments. It's rare to see someone jump from a 19' ski boat to a 32' hi-performance with twin motors. We tend to move gradually to larger or faster machines - as our experience and knowledge allow us. Therefore we also tend to understand the conditions, and what our skills and hardware are capable of. To invest this sort money into something you love (the water and the freedom it gives) causes us to be even more cautious than most. We want our guests and fellow boaters to feel safe and enjoy the water as much as we do.
A simple sign of this is how meticulisly (sp?) we maintain our boats. Much less chance for breakdown or hazard to other boaters when we are certain our boats are in top operating condition.
Occasionally you have non-boaters that jump in with both feet and a large bank account and buy something they are too inexperienced to properly use. This is rare, but it does happen.
Plenty of people on this board have large fast boats, some with smaller fast boats, some with slow boats. The key to all of this, - if you have speed, you only use it when prudent, and the conditions exist that allow it. Many of the people "here" are looking to learn more about properly running and maintaining there boats.
The comments by Mr. Jordan make it sound like just anyone can jump in one of these high performance boats and run it wide open. I understand this is his sales pitch, but it is blatantly a lie. This goes for every boat on the water. You must have respect for the water, and understand the capabilities of your boat as well as yourself, and if you happen to know the machine and yourself fairly well, you will be smart enough to know when you and the conditions are proper to use your knowledge.
From my experience in performance boating, we as a community rarely use the performance available to us under the hatch outside of organized events (i.e. poker runs, races, etc..). Most of the time we enjoy tying up together to check out each others boats, or make a dinner run (at cruising speeds). Occasionally we'll make a short quick run, but it is always when conditions are safe, and plenty of others are around in the event something happens.
We, (as in every class of boat - not just Hi-performance) have a few idiots, that disregard the basic rules of common sense and current water conditions.
The accident this past weekend on the Ohio river is the fault of the driver, not the boat. Realization - this same accident could have been caused by nearly any boat on the water with an operator disregarding the basic rules of water safety.
I hope the injured family has a speedy and full recovery from this terrible incident, and I hope they go on to enjoy the water as we do. I also hope they (the family as well as the law) place the blame of this incident on the DRIVER - not the particular craft or type of craft he was operating.

Bouy
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Old 07-01-2003, 07:02 AM
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They are on to this Putz !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! he is expected to turn himself in today !!! How anybody could leave those people to die & not stop tp render aid is beyond me !!! Thank god they all lived.

They are beating us up badly in the press.."Cigarette" is all they can say. even pics of the 600 Cigarette all over the TV.
I think we all need to be more careful out there !!
stop the high speed passes through downtown & such......Otherwise they WILL harass us to no end......
As always in life....Afew ruin it for the rest
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Old 07-01-2003, 07:12 AM
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birdog -
I also noticed that that image of a "cig" was stolen straight from the OSO site front page. And has shown up on the news channels.
Hopefully this guy turns himself in - he should have done that yesterday. Take responsibility for your actions! - and again - the actions of the driver - not the boat or the "class of the boat".

Bouy
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Old 07-01-2003, 07:20 AM
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The people at Moscow boat ramp say it was a triple engine Fountain....1 drive hanging off......This POS is hiding in Columbus Ohio....I did'nt catch if he lives there ? his "Lawyers" have been in tough with authorities......I am going to direct my e-mails & such to the courts... NO PLEE BARGAIN !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
They need to bring "Maritime" charges against him...these statutes date back to the 1600s or so....."Failure to render assistance" I think they hang you.....
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Old 07-01-2003, 08:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by birdog
The people at Moscow boat ramp say it was a triple engine Fountain....1 drive hanging off......This POS is hiding in Columbus Ohio....I did'nt catch if he lives there ? his "Lawyers" have been in tough with authorities......I am going to direct my e-mails & such to the courts... NO PLEE BARGAIN !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
They need to bring "Maritime" charges against him...these statutes date back to the 1600s or so....."Failure to render assistance" I think they hang you.....
There was a 42 Fountain over at the shop last night with blown upper cases...mainly white with red and yellow stripes? No name on the back, didnt look like much damage. If it is him, I hope he has left already...Do you think they would try me as an adult or as a minor?
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Old 07-01-2003, 09:20 AM
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WOW! I haven't been able to catch much of the media coverage but this is friggin crazy.

FIRST....This guy must have the book thrown at him!

SECONDLY...The press is ignorant! The mere fact that they are calling it a "cigarette" pisses me off! At least realize that it was a "high performance" or "offshore powerboat". I agree with everyone here! This did not happan because the guy was a "cigarette" boat driver. This happaned because the guy had bad, really bad judgement!! That fact is, no matter what type of boat he was driving it could have happened.

I was with Allan4 when we saw this guy that could not maintain control of his boat and almost killed his whole family by getting lodged under the Hooters barge!! Of course....the media didn't get all over the pleasure boaters with 19-22 feet boats that buy them and have absolutely no skill or training. These are the guys that can't even back there trailer straight!! Yet they think they can go out on the river with their whole family and negotiate the current of the ohio river!!! I DON'T THINK SO!! These guys are a problem. Do you here the media chastising them? NO!!!

Well...I will stop here.......

Byron
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