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A passenger thrown overboard in a boat crash was pulled bleeding but alive from the waters off Miami Beach on December 10.

The 21-year-old man had been riding in a boat that crashed into a channel marker. He was ejected into the water. A passing Fish & Wildlife Commission officer came to the rescue.

The victim suffered head wounds and was taken to the hospital.

According to the official FWC statement, officer Nathanael Martir-Negron of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s witnessed a boat crash into a red channel marker.

The boat passengers began desperately yelling for help. When the officer approached the scene, he was told that their friend, Christopher Alexander Afonso, fell overboard.

Martir-Negron immediately examined the water surrounding the boat. He saw Afonso in the water and crying for help. The officer flung a floatation device toward Afonso, and then pulled him to safety.

Once safely aboard the patrol boat, Afonso was disoriented and had an open wound on his head. He was taken to a dock so that EMS could transport him to the hospital.

The boat operator was cited for being reckless and for not having a boater safety ID card.

Bodies of Boaters Pulled From Lake

In another Florida boating tragedy, Volusia County Sheriff’s Office recovered the bodies of two men from Lake Jesup after they were missing for a week. The men left on a boating excursion and did not return.

There were no apparent signs of trauma to their bodies. Reportedly, neither was wearing a life jacket.

In Florida, the leading cause of death in fatal boating accidents is drowning (62 percent).
There were 668 reportable boating accidents and 79 boating-related deaths in 2012, according to the FWC.


Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission

Rescued boater

Two boating deaths