Originally Posted by flippin fool
as for the ejection factor... im thinking of 2 things that can cause it to happen. 1.) your going way to fast in rough water wich would be your own stupidity or 2.) you hit the big brown break wall that you should of seen to begin with.
MARBLEHEAD -- Life jackets and an emergency engine shut-off switch may have saved the lives of two fishermen thrown from a moving boat Friday near the lighthouse, U.S. Coast Guard officers said.
The pair, who were competing in the BASS Sandusky Northern Open tournament, were and treated and released for injuries Friday morning at Magruder Hospital, said Kim Jessup, BASS spokeswoman.
Aron Wessels, 35, Watervliet, N.Y., likely suffered a broken right rib, said Paul Gimple, petty officer for U.S. Coast Guard, Marblehead station. Mitchell Rhoton, 23, Indianapolis, had minor injuries, Gimple said.
Both were wearing life jackets, Gimple said.
"With that kind of injury, (Wessels) could have drowned without that life jacket," Gimple said. "These guys did exactly what they're supposed to do."
The fishermen left the Sandusky boat launch at 6:30 a.m. aboard Wessels' 21-foot Triton bass boat, Jessup said. The vessel was traveling at 60 mph, a normal speed for sport-fishing boats, when its steering failed, said Petty Officer Shawn McNerney, who led the team that rescued the pair.
The boat, which has an open top and no cabin, then made a sharp 90-degree turn and dumped the two into the lake, Gimple said.
"There's nothing they could have done about it," Gimple said. "It doesn't seem like there was any kind of neglect on anyone's part in this."
Wessels, who was driving, was wearing a kill switch, a device that clips the driver to the throttle. If the driver moves too far away from the steering wheel, the switch automatically turns off the engine and stops the boat, Gimple said.
"Without it, it could have possibly run them over," McNerney said.
An unidentified person who was near the lighthouse saw the accident and called 911 at 6:50 a.m., Gimple said. Coast Guard officers arrived at the scene seven minutes later, he said.
Meanwhile, Greg Caine, 39, Fort Wayne, Ind., a Good Samaritan competing in the fishing tournament, picked up Wessels less than a mile off the Marblehead lighthouse, McNerney said. Rhoton swam back to the boat, which stayed upright, Gimple said.
Caine told McNerney he saw a big blast of water in the air and knew something was wrong. Wessels was laying on the back of Caine's boat when Coast Guard officers arrived, McNerney said.
"(Wessels) was shivering," McNerney said. "He was definitely shaken up. He could barely move."
Caine and the officers went to nearby Bay Point Marina where officers wrapped Wessels in a blanket and used a splint to move him off the boat and into an ambulance, McNerney said.
The Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Watercraft, anchored Wessels' boat by the light house and later took it to Sandusky, Gimple said. The craft, which had little damage, was released to Wessels Friday afternoon.
Wessels, Rhoton and Caine could not be reached for comment.
Coast Guard officers were very pleased with the rescue operation, Gimple said.
The call for assistance came when they were getting dressed or in the shower, a difficult time to mobilize a team quickly, he said. They were out the door and in the rescue boat in four minutes, and the fishermen were on land in 35 minutes.
"As the Coast Guard, we really strive for that," Gimple said.
Originally published July 16, 2005