Rude boaters, spectators ruined Grand Lake fireworks experience
July 16, 2009
To the Editor:
For four generations my family has been enjoying Grand Lake and the fireworks. This year we had our family on three boats including 10 small children.
When the fireworks finished we moved toward the channel. I was leading the way when a pontoon boat went sideways and blocked the bridge. The boats in line waited while the pontoon straightened out and went through the narrow bridge opening; another pontoon had the same problem.
An impatient boat came along trying to cut in line. A pontoon boat on my left was out of position, so he backed up toward another boat that reacted by moving toward my boat. I was trapped but maneuver around the pontoon and got through.
Our other two boats were not so lucky. My nephew, in the second boat, was waiting patiently for the boats to clear when other boats, trying to break in line, came too close. There wasn’t any place to go for some of the boats, because other boats had come up behind them. One boat was backing up with its spinning propeller out of the water. My sister pushed the boat away, only inches from the boat. Our boat was hit by at least two other boats.
My 35-year-old son in the third boat was pushed out of line by an obnoxious ski boat My son was then rammed by other boats and pushed sideways into the bridge. They have had the boat for only six weeks. He was hit by at least six different boats and sustained over $6,000 in damage.
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Every time a boat would crash into my son’s boat, the people watching on and around the bridge would yell and cheer. A loud, obnoxious boat, with a booze-fueled driver and passengers, pushed their way through causing more damage and confusion. Many other boats were damaged. We were lucky that no one was injured.
Accidents do happen, but the majority of this was not an accident. Impatient people put the lives and safety of young children, and adults, in danger, and had no concern for other people or property. The greatest disappointment was that the people on the bridge laughed and applauded each time new damage was inflicted.
It is sad that a few, selfish, inconsiderate, people have ruined it for my family and many others.