May 14, 2012 |
Ten feet. Had Matthew R. Devlin walked that far, he could have alerted his tugboat captain that he was experiencing a family emergency, in all likelihood saving the lives of two Hungarian tourists who died in the July 2010 duck-boat accident. One minute. Had Devlin, the first mate, kept watch as the tug pushed a 250-foot barge down the Delaware River, that is all the time he would have needed to turn his boat to avoid the collision that killed Dora Schwendtner, 16, and Szabolcs Prem, 20. Two lives were lost because of failures both small and epic that day, leading to a $17 million settlement Wednesday for the families and 18 surviving passengers when the federal lawsuit suddenly ended after less than two days of testimony.
May 9, 2012 |
The duck-boat trial came to a halt Tuesday after the judge in the federal case urged the two sides to enter settlement talks. It is possible the trial will resume if lawyers for the passengers on the duck boat and for the two companies that operated the vessels involved in the accident can't reach an agreement. On July 7, 2010, a tug operated by K-Sea Transportation Partners pushed a barge into a duck boat operated by Ride the Ducks. Passengers on the boat filed a civil suit against the two companies, claiming they are liable in the accident.
March 25, 2011
The Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation will honor Philadelphia Police Detective Timothy Brooks at Arlington National Cemetery on Friday for rescuing passengers in last year's fatal duck-boat accident on the Delaware River. Brooks dived in and rescued a mother and her three children after a towed barge capsized the duck July 7. Two Hungarian tourists died. Brooks is one of three people selected by Medal of Honor recipients for 2011 Citizen Service Before Self Honors. Marie Conley, a crossing guard from Boston, will be honored posthumously for shielding a 10-year-old boy from an oncoming car. The third honoree is Pascal Spino, a pediatrician from Greensburg, Pa. The ceremony is scheduled for 2:45 p.m. at the Tomb of the Unknowns.
April 21, 2011 |
Tourists clearly are happy that duck boat tours are back in operation. The first Ride the Ducks vehicle to carry tourists in more than eight months took off fully loaded this morning as more potential passengers gathered on Fifth Street near Market to board the next of the amphibious vehicles. "We're not concerned about being on the boats," said Gary Gasperack from Belchertown, Mass., before boarding. "We've been on the boats in Boston, and we loved it, and we have no qualms about it. " Duck boat operations have been suspended since July, when a barge ran over one of the crafts in the Delaware River, killing two Hungarian tourists.
May 7, 2012 |
A Ride the Ducks boat stalled on the Delaware River Sunday afternoon, on the eve of a trial stemming from the 2010 accident in which a large barge hit a duck vessel stopped on the water, killing two passengers. All 26 passengers and two crew members were towed safely to shore, the company said. After the 2010 accident, in which two Hungarian students died when a barge hit a stalled Ride the Ducks boat, the company, working with the Coast Guard, created a safety plan that included always having a tow boat nearby.
May 8, 2012 |
In the nearly two years since their children drowned in the Delaware, the families of Dora Schwendtner and Szabolcs Prem have grown close. They had never met before the summer of 2010, when Dora, 16, and Szabolcs, 20, came to Philadelphia as part of a church-sponsored cross-cultural trip. But on July 7 of that year, after a barge overran the Ride the Ducks tour boat that had been anchored with engine trouble in the middle of a shipping lane, the families were thrown together by tragedy.
May 10, 2012 |
The two companies operating the watercraft involved in the July 2010 duck-boat accident that killed two Hungarian tourists will pay their families a combined $15 million as part of a legal settlement reached this afternoon. An additional $2 million will be split by 18 passengers on the duck boat who survived. The parents of Szabolcs Prem, 20, and Dora Schwendtner, 16, who drowned when a barge pushed the duck boat they were riding on under water, were traveling to Hungary Wednesday and not available for comment.
June 30, 2011 |
As Philadelphia nears the one-year anniversary of the fatal stalling of a Ride the Ducks tour boat, a set of tourists got stranded aboard a similar vessel in San Francisco Bay. On Wednesday, just before noon, the California boat had to be towed from the water, after experiencing engine trouble that produced smoke, according to the San Francisco Examiner. No one was hurt. Two Hungarian tourists died on July 7, 2010, when a stalled duck boat in the Delaware River was struck by a city barge being pushed by a tugboat.
June 21, 2011 |
WASHINGTON - The fatal collision of a duck boat and a barge on the Delaware River last July was "another tragic example of the deadliness of distraction," the chairwoman of the National Transportation Safety Board said Tuesday as the NTSB convened its final hearing into the crash. The frequent use of a cell phone and computer by the tugboat's first mate, Matt Devlin, who was supposed to be watching for river traffic, distracted him from his duties, said Deborah Hersman in her opening remarks as the hearing began.