runaway boat essex ma

Man, kids thrown into Essex River and circled by runaway boat

ESSEX — Police said it was “miracle that no one was severely injured or killed” in a boating accident on the Essex River on Saturday.

Police Chief Peter Silva said an Essex father and his children, 7 and 3, were boating on Saturday afternoon at around 3 p.m.

The dad “made a quick turn, which sent one child off the bow of the boat into the water, and while overcorrecting the steering, the father and three-year-old also were thrown overboard,” he said.

“During this incident, the motor was still in gear and throttled up on plane, dangerously circling the family in the water,” he added.

A family from Conomo Point were on another boat and saw what happened, the three people in the water, and the unoccupied boat circling them, police said.

“They quickly dialed 911, rescued the three from the water and covered them with towels, then transported them to the Essex town landing, where emergency personnel were waiting to evaluate them,” Silva said.

“Assistant harbormaster Troy Perry was able to stop the unmanned vessel, but not before the harbormaster boat was struck by the moving vessel,” he added.

He was able to shut off the power to the motor. The vessel was towed to a local dock, where he and Officer Chad Lipinski dewatered the boat, then towed it to the Essex town landing, where Det. Ryan Davis conducting an investigation into this incident, Silva said.

“I want to commend the rescuers, harbor staff, the officers, and the emergency responders who were involved, and say that it is a miracle that no one was severely injured, or killed in this incident,” he said.

“We are very grateful for the quick thinking and decisive actions of the rescuers who pulled the three victims out of the water so quickly before they could have been struck by the moving unmanned vessel.”

Footage Of Runaway Boat Off Plum Island