Archive for Propeller Accident

Matthew Meinert and son Oliver just before they took off Star-Telegram image

Matthew Meinert and son Oliver just before they took off
Star-Telegram image

On Monday, 6 March 2017, Matthew Meinert, 38 of Trophy Club Texas, and his two year old son, Oliver, went fishing in Denton Creek near Lake Grapevine in the Fort Worth – Dallas Texas area. Matthew Meinert was last seen Monday near Lake Grapevine.

Matthew and Oliver launched their boat about 5 pm Monday from Tropy Club boat ramp.

Between 5 and 6 pm Monday a boater found his boat on shore abandoned on Denton Creek just west of Highway 377 in what was referred to an an unusual location. The boater used the cell phone to call the family, then called 911.

Meinert's boat as found on shore clipped from a Fox 4 image

Meinert’s boat as found on shore
clipped from a Fox 4 image

His cell phone and life jackets were found with the boat.

A search and rescue effort was mounted Monday night. The search was called off at 2am for safety, and restarted at 9am Tuesday. As a Flower Mound police officer and a game warden were headed to the boat on Tuesday morning about 8:45am, they saw two year old boy, Oliver, walking though heavy brush. He had survived being alone and cold in the woods overnight in a t-shirt and shorts with all kinds of wildlife nearby. Oliver was scratched up and cold but safe, and asked the officers for juice. He was taken to the Cooks Children’s Medical Center in Fort Worth to be check out, and found to be fine. Read More→

Aiden Mckitrick and his mom clipped from WFAA video

Aiden Mckitrick and his mom
clipped from WFAA video

Back on May 5, 2016, three year old Aiden McKitrick fell from the front of a pontoon boat and was entrapped on the propeller.
We posted coverage of his accident at that time.

Now (early March 2017) about ten months after Aiden’s accident on Lake Ray Hubbard in Texas, his mother is speaking out with a warning to parents.

WFAA (ABC channel 8 of Dallas, Texas), carried her story in a 2 March 2017 newscast. The news story is accompanied by an emotional video in which she tries to alert others of how her son was nearly killed by pontoon boat propeller.

Aiden’s mother, Kelly Mckitrick, is a nurse and his father is a firefighter. His father helped extract him from the propeller, and his mother has played the role that only a mother can in his recovery.

His mom says, “When they raised the propeller up that’s when my husband saw his intestines hanging out and his leg was mangled.” Read More→

Kaden Frederick cropped from Daily Mail image

Kaden Frederick
cropped from Daily Mail image

9 year-old Kaden Frederick was on the bow of a rented pontoon boat Wednesday afternoon August 17, 2016 near Ocean City, Maryland. The pontoon boat was running about half speed as he dangled his legs over the bow. Three others sat on the bow beside him. We previously covered the accident.

Kaden fell over the boat and was struck by the propeller. Veteran police officials described his injuries as horrific. Kaden later died from his injuries. In response to this accident, a Maryland regulation has since been proposed to specifically ban bow riding / bowriding.

Under the Bridge Watersports rented the pontoon boat out that was involved in the accident. Tyler Barnes owns OC Watersports which operates Under the Bridge Watersports.

Maryland Natural Resources Police have filed several charges against Tyler Barnes and OC Watersports including renting a boat out without the proper equipment, renting a boat without a plate showing the boat’s maximum capacity, failing to keep records for law enforcement agencies, and negligent operation of a vessel.

As to proper equipment they were short two life jackets to have enough for everyone on board, however the boat had a capacity of 15 but there were 17 on board. The negligent operation count has to do with allowing an overloaded boat to leave their dock.

If they were fined the maximum amount on all counts, the fine would be less than $700 per The Dispatch (Ocean City).

A hearing is set for 17 February 2017.


On 20 January 2017 the boat operator was charged in New Jersey’s Worcester County District Court with negligent operation of a boat. The operator has acknowledged he knew 4 people were bow riding in front of the front fence of the pontoon boat. News reports indicate the maximum penalty for such a charge is $500.

0 Categories : Legal Shorts

We previously covered the 24 July 2016 Lake Powell propeller accident involving 7 year old Dylan Darland. He’s been receiving tremendous support from the off-road racing community at Fund Raising for Dylan Darland

Sanderson Ford raffles 2016 Mustang for Dylan Darland

Sanderson Ford raffles 2016 Mustang for Dylan Darland

Now, Sanderson Ford, of Glendale, Arizona has ponied up a 2016 Mustang. It’s not just any Mustang, it’s a 2016 ROUSH Stage 3 Ford Mustang. Did I mention it has 670 horsepower!

Get your tickets online at
through 13 November 2016

Read More→

0 Categories : Fundraisers
Dylan Darland

Dylan Darland
from a race-deZert image

Dylan Darland,7, was boating on Lake Powell Sunday 24 July 2016. He was with his father, Jeff Darland (an off road racer) and Dylan’s brother. Also along was Dylan’s father’s girlfriend, and her son.

Just out of Bullfrog Marina, their boat struck something (later thought to have been a sandbar). On impact, all three boys were ejected. The other two boys were okay, but Dylan Darland was critically injured by the propeller. He lost his lower right leg and has since lost his right hand.

The ever present Good Samaritan’s in these accidents rushed Dylan and his father to a local medical clinic. Dylan was life flighted from there to Phoenix Children’s Hospital.

Several off-road racers immediately helped various family members assemble in Phoenix and get back to town the next day. The story is best told by race-deZert (RDG). RDG is also the source of images of Dylan on this page.

The Darland’s extended off-road racing family has been a tremendous blessing to them since the accident. Beyond immediate help and prayers, racers have conducted various fundraisers and kept the cause in front of their group. Read More→

0 Categories : Fundraisers

Good Samaritans in Minnesota have came to the rescue in at least two different Circle of Death boating accidents so far this year.

Neighbors were recently honored for saving Lora Sweet, 51, and Timothy Bahama, 48, both of Brainerd Minnesota from a 15 April 2016 Circle of Death accident on Rice Lake. They were in a 17 foot tiller steered fishing boat powered by a 40 horsepower outboard. Lora and Timothy were both flung from the boat into cold 44 degree water about 6pm, the boat went into the Circle of Death, and ran over Sweet more than once. News reports sway she was struck by the motor / propeller twice. WCCO 4News at Noon told the story of the award ceremony on 27 September 2016.

Rescuers Honored in MN

Neighbors Honored in MN boat accident rescue

The video above appears to show a tiller steered Lund boat.

The second pair of Good Samaritans, Brian Bahr and Kyle Bourasa, sprang to the rescue this past Sunday, 24 October 2016 on Bald Eagle Lake near the town of White Bear Lake. They pulled two men from 50 degree water while the victim’s boat was in the Circle of Death. KSTP ABC News5 ran a great article and video telling of the rescue.

The video above also appears to show a tiller steered Lund boat, this one with a Mercury Marine outboard motor.


Thousands of boaters owe their lives to similar Good Samaritans around the country and world. We thank all of them and encourage the rest of you to be prepared and willing to spring into action should the need arise. Boat propeller accidents would be more frequent and more severe without your help.

Timothy Clippard

Timothy Clippard

In May 2013 Timothy Clippard of Missouri was killed in a boating accident on Kentucky Lake during a bass fishing tournament. His fishing partner piloted the Ranger bass boat as they passed under a large bridge on the way back to weigh in. The 225 horsepower Yamaha outboard motor struck a barely submerged bridge support beam hidden by high water. The outboard motor broke off the back of the boat, flipped into the boat, and with the propeller still rotating under power, fatally struck Tim Clippard. We previously covered the accident at Timothy Clippard of Missouri Killed on Kentucky Lake in Boat Accident.

Mr. Clippard’s widow sued Yamaha Motor Corporation, USA and Yamaha Motor Co. Ltd. (Japan).

Clippard, et al v. Yamaha Motor Corporation, U.S.A., et al
United States District Court
Western District of Kentucky
Case # 5:;14-cv-83-TBR

The complaint alleged:

1. Yamaha was aware of the risk of outboard motors striking submerged objects and flipping into the boat, and was aware of feasible alternative designs to eliminate these risks, and did little to develop and nothing to implement such alternative designs.

2. Yamaha knew or should have known the hazards and dangers associated with the motor and failed to adequately warn expected and foreseeable users.

In addition to traditional damages sought with the death of a loved one in a collision accident, the family also sought punitive damages based on Yamaha’s knowledge of the problem and their failure to develop and implement alternative designs.

Curtis O. Poore of The Limbaugh Law Firm and Peter Perlman of Peter Perlman Law Offices filed the complaint on 30 April 2014. Midway during the case, Morry S. Cole of Gray, Ritter & Graham, P.C. replaced Mr. Perlman.

Linsey W. West and Kara M. Stewart of Dinsmore & Shohle LLP and Richard A. Mueller of Thompson Colburn LLP represented Yamaha.

The Judge, Judge Thomas B. Russell, issued an Order of Dismissal on 30 September 2016 announcing a settlement had been reached, and the case was dismissed.

0 Categories : Legal Shorts

Faith Kalei-Imaizumi

Faith Kalei-Imaizumi

Faith Kalei-Imaizumi was participating in the Pailolo Challenge canoe race, a 26 mile race downwind from Maui to Molokai on Saturday 17 September 2016. During the race, escort boats bring out fresh crew members in exchange for tired crew members. Faith was in an escort boat. Her hat fell into the water, she dove in retrieve it. While the accident is being investigated, some think the escort boat reversed to prevent striking another escort boat and she was struck by the propeller. Faith was severely struck in the thighs and groin. She was taken to shore at D.T. Flemming Beach Park in Kapalua where CPR was performed by first responders, life flighted to Maui Memorial Medical Center, then taken to Queens Hospital on Oahu. A GoFundMe page has been established to assist with expenses.

Pailolo Challenge Outrigger Canoe Race

Pailolo Challenge Outrigger Canoe Race

Faith’s accident comes on the heels of the stalling of a proposal to require propeller guards. The proposal was named House Bill 2024.

House Bill 2024 was put forth in the wake of the Sri Shim propeller fatality, in which his stepson, Trey Albrecht, was also injured by the propeller. Read More→

0 Categories : Regulations

Outboard can strike submerged object, break off, and flip into the boat warning

Outboard can strike submerged object, break off, and flip into the boat warning

In 1970, William Haddon, Jr. a well known safety expert published a ground breaking safety article:
On The Escape of Tigers: an Ecological Note.
by William Haddon, Jr.
American Journal of Public Health.
December 1970. Vol.60. No.12. Pages 2229-2234.

The the article has since been widely republished and reprinted.

The thesis of the article is that per Mr. Haddon, by 1970 The United States and most developed nations had made significant progress against “living environmental hazards” (medical issues caused by living organisms such as germs, bacteria, etc.). However, similar progress had not been made against “non-living hazards” (accidents leading to injury or death).

The field of Medicine had many strategies and processes by which to attack emerging problems causes by living organisms (such as the Zika virus in current times). While science may not immediately defeat the Zika virus, the basic processes and methods to use to begin to develop a means to combat such a threat are well known.

That same basic structure of processes by which to develop a means to combat an emerging health risk caused by a living organism did not exist to combat a health risk caused by a non-living structure (such as some new type of accident that injures or kills humans).

In his paper, Haddon tried to bring structure to the process of mitigating or eliminating accidents resulting from the sudden release of energy.

In order to better marshal resources against these “non-living hazards”, William Haddon, Jr. suggested that many of them result from “the transfer of energy in such ways and amounts,and at such rapid rates, that inanimate or animate structures are damaged. (Like a bass boat outboard motor striking a submerged object, breaking off, flipping into the boat, and striking those on board with its still rotating propeller). Haddon goes on identify some harmful “non-living hazards” that interact with people and property as: hurricanes, earthquakes, projectiles (like an outboard motor), moving vehicles (like a boat), ionizing radiation, lightning, conflagrations, and notes the cuts and bruises of daily life illustrate our interaction with the rapid transfer of energy.

The paper’s title derives from one example of the quick release energy, the release of tigers. Read More→

Kaelynne Driscoll and her dog, Ditch

Kaelynne Driscoll and her dog, Ditch

Kaelynne Driscoll, an 8 year old girl, was riding an inner tube with her father, Christopher Driscoll, on Wednesday 6 July 2016. They were tubing on Skaneateles Lake in Onondaga County New York behind a 17 foot Bayliner boat. The tube struck a wake, she and her father fell from the tube, the boat, being operated by Kaelynne’s step mother (Jamie Wheeler), circled back around to pick them up, and both were struck by the boat’s propeller.

Authorities were first called a little before 6pm.

Two Good Samaritans boating nearby (Eric Marcinkowski or Syracuse and David Goetzmann or Skaneateles) pulled them from the water and took them to shore at the State Boat ramp near A41 where they were met by first paramedics and taken to Upstate University Hospital in Syracuse New York.

The Good Samaritans later told their story to They had only been out a short time when they heard screams. Marcinkowski went to a nearby swim platform where he grabbed Kaelynne from her father. Her father was trying to hold her up as her life jacket had been cut off by the boat propeller. As Marcinkowski pulled the girl from the water, he started wrapping her in towels to try to slow down blood loss, while he tried to keep her head steady. Goetzmann quickly drove them to the boat ramp where paramedics had already arrived.

Kaelynne had been struck in the head, arm, and leg. Read More→