Prosecutors drop charges against airboat operators

(NEW ORLEANS, LA — September 6, 2007) Federal prosecutors will not criminally charge the operators of an airboat that overturned in 2004, killing two of the 16 passengers and injuring 10 others, according to WWLTV of New Orleans.

Administrative charges are still being contemplated in the Louisiana Swamp Tours accidents, according to Lt. Cmdr. Cheri Ben-Esau, spokeswoman for the U.S. Coast Guard’s Marine Safety Office in New Orleans. That decision will probably be made within the month.

The Swamp King, a 16-passenger airboat flipped in about three feet of water. All 16 passengers were buckled in to their seats and had to struggle to free themselves or had to be cut free when the boat overturned about 22 miles south of New Orleans.

By Professional Mariner Staff