Four people were pulled from the water late Thursday night after a reported boat collision south of the Bay Bridge.
The Anne Arundel County Fire Department tells Bay Bulletin that someone called in a flare sighting around 9 p.m., around half a mile south of Bay Bridge, closer to the western shore side.
Maryland Natural Resources Police (NRP) say a good Samaritan who followed the flare sightings found a 30-foot cuddy cabin cruiser overturned with three people in the water nearby. But a fourth boater was still missing and believed to be in the cabin. The good Samaritan helped the first three people onto another boat. They later refused medical treatment.
An NRP diver identified as Officer Brian Hunt located the fourth victim and pulled him from the water onto an Annapolis City fireboat. According to Anne Arundel County Fire, he was suffering from symptoms of hypothermia. After being taken to shore at Sandy Point, he was flown by Maryland State Police helicopter to Shock Trauma in Baltimore. NRP says all four victims were wearing life jackets.
Anne Arundel County Fire Department spokesman Capt. Russ Davies tells Bay Bulletin that his department found a second boat involved in the incident, and NRP confirms there was a collision. “The second boat was disabled, but the occupants were uninjured,” Davis says.
NRP says they are still investigating the incident, but it’s clear that the decision to wear life jackets was a key factor in saving the victims’ lives:
“The Maryland Natural Resources Police reminds boaters to always wear their life jacket. Boating accidents can happen quicker than you can imagine. Therefore, it is imperative to have your life jacket readily accessible if you aren’t already wearing it,” says NRP spokesperson Lauren Moses.
Bay Bulletin will continue to update this story.
-Meg Walburn Viviano