Deadly boating accidents in Rappahannock, Hampton rivers

Quinton Sheppard - Posted on Jul 08, 2010 - 05:59 PM

A boating accident in the Rappahannock River Monday night left one woman dead and another nine people hospitalized. John Bull, spokesperson for Virginia Marine Resources Commission (VMRC), said the accident occurred shortly after 10 o’clock at Channel Marker 10 off Smoky Point in the Rappahannock River.

The 10 individuals, all from the Richmond area, were traveling upriver in a 22-foot Chaparral motorboat when they ran head-on into the concrete channel marker at a speed of 35 miles per hour, Bull said.

Amanda Brady, 25, died at the scene and the other nine people were sent to area hospitals and the extent of their injuries is still not known, Bull said.

Bull said the accident is under investigation by the marine police.

He said the channel marker did have a flashing red beacon on the top to alert nearby boaters to its whereabouts.

Bull called the incident "one of the worst boating accidents anyone at VMRC remembers in Virginia waters."

He praised the efforts of the Middlesex Volunteer Fire and Rescue Department, the Coast Guard and others who were involved in the major rescue operation.

The July 4th holiday also proved to be deadly to a boater in Hampton. Thirty-five-year-old Elizabeth Elliott died of head trauma after a seven year-old boy operating the boat she was on struck a private pier in a narrow channel of the Hampton River.