Tourist Injured in Collision With Boat
Written by www.channel5belize.com
Friday, 08 June 2007

Tourist injured in collision with boat
On Friday, forty-three year old Thierry Roquet, A French national residing in Guatemala, arrived in Belize for a three-day visit, but his vacation became a nightmare when later that same day he was run over by a boat. Roquet says that he was snorkelling approximately sixty feet from the pier in Caye Caulker around five-thirty that evening when heard a noise and saw a boat bearing down on him. The tourist says he tried to avoid the collision, but his right hand came in contact with the boat's propeller and three of his fingers were severed. The injured man was transported to the K.H.M.H. where he was treated and has since been released. This morning Roquet visited our studios and said something has to be done to alert visitors to the dangers of swimming in that area. He would also like Triple J owner Jason Marin to take responsibility for the incident.

Thierry Roquet, Boat Accident Victim
“I am very lucky; I feel very, very luck. When I pushed my head above the water I only see the boat and I don’t know why, the only thing I can do is to push but I spoke with other people around the caye and I could have lost my head or my legs or my body. It’s a miracle I am going to live.”

“I was very close to the beach and I don’t understand why this boat arrived so quickly and so close to the beach and I would like that people know on Caye Caulker that they have to put signs or these kinds of things to advise that this is a very dangerous place. I spoke with the police, of course I had to make a declaration and what I don’t understand too some people say that you are in the wrong place at the wrong moment and it’s your fault and it seems that the owner of the boat said I am not responsible.”

Kendra Griffith
“Do you just want him to say “I am responsible” and that would be enough, do you want compensation for your medical bills? What do you want?”

Thierry Roquet
“Well first it would be I think it will be honest for his part to recognise that he is responsible. It is not as if I broke my arm; I lost these three fingers for all of my life. My work will change, my life will change. So I think he has to have an insurance for this boat, so the insurance has to pay. I am not asking money from him. I am quite sure that he has an insurance, so the insurance has to pay me.”

This morning News Five contacted Marin who said that while the incident is unfortunate, he does not believe that his boat ever came in contact with Roquet. Marin claims his captain and deckhand had a clear view of the water and did not see or hear Roquet when they allegedly hit him and neither did any of his passengers. Marin went on to say that there are lots of boats travelling in the area and had his boat hit Roquet, his injuries would have been much more severe. Police are investigating the incident.

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