News

Boat Crash claims life of one

By Dennis Box

The Courier-Herald

A man was killed and nine people were injured when two boats collided about 10:30 p.m. Monday on Lake Tapps.

According to officials from East Pierce Fire and Rescue, the collision occurred near Interlake Island. Residents on the island reported hearing the crash. East Pierce crews arrived at the 4900 block of 149th Avenue East, the south end of Interlake Island, and began treating 11 people who were on the boats.

Bonney Lake police officers arrived on the scene and estimated a jet boat, traveling at about 25 mph, hit the second boat between Interlake and Inlet islands.

In the chaos and darkness surrounding the incident, the passengers of the second boat told East Pierce crew members the driver could not be found and they feared he was thrown into the water.

Dive teams began searching the lake and found Ronald Scott two hours later. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Members of the dive team were from East Pierce Fire and Rescue, Pierce County Sheriff’s Department, Valley Regional Fire Authority and Renton Fire and Emergency Services.

East Pierce officials reported one person was airlifted to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle in critical condition. Another was transported to an area hospital in critical condition and later airlifted to Harborview.

A third person was taken to an area hospital in serious condition and six others were treated at the scene for minor injuries.

The police department estimated the first boat was launched over the second boat, sheering its top off, knocking the driver into the water and injuring the people aboard.

There is a no-wake zone on Lake Tapps after dark, requiring speeds 5 mph or less.

Police officials suspect alcohol was involved.

The driver of the jet boat was arrested at the scene on suspicion of homicide by watercraft.

Some of the information for the article was provided by East Pierce Fire and Rescue.

Reach Dennis Box at dbox@courierherald.com or 360-802-8209.

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