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Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 57,816
Marty Offline
Marty  Offline
A boating incident near San Pedro town today has left two people injured.

Maria Novelo reporting...
“Newlyweds Rob and Dina Leonard were enjoying their stay in a resort south of Ambergris Caye and whilst basking in the sun and snorkelling the refreshing Caribbean Sea, their honeymoon quickly turned into a nightmare around midday today. The couple was run over by a boat and sustained varying degrees of injuies. Police have yet to issue a formal statement as investigations continue but an eyewitness told Love News that the incident could have been avoided.

Eyewitness 1
“It was a very dangerous situation because the boat was way too close to the coast it was just 50 feet off the dock of Caribe Island. It was a very irresponsible driver, he should not be allowed anymore to drive a water taxi.”

The boat was a chartered San Pedro Belize Express vessel that was just a few miles from its docking station in San Pedro Town. Captain of the vessel, Anthony Everett we were told, did not see the couple in the area and after it ran over them, their screams alerted him that something was wrong. A short distance behind was a scheduled boat run from the Caye Caulker Water Taxi. Captain of that vessel, Andrew Logan says they stopped to render aid. A passenger travelling in the Caye Caulker Water Taxi told us what he witnessed.

Eyewitness 2
“He was talking the whole time, he lost a lot of blood but for some reason he did not go into shock so I think he is going to be okay. We had him in the back of the boat and there was a bunch of guys and we said get something to carry him and they did and they carried him up.”

Thirty one year old Rob Leonard lost his right leg in the incident and suffered other lacerations to the hands whilst thirty two year old Dina Leonard received minor scrapes. Rob who was first taken to the San Pedro polyclinic was flown via Wings of Hope to Belize City for further treatment at the KHMH


#416357 - 09/16/11 10:43 PM Re: BOATING ACCIDENT LEAVES TWO PEOPLE INJURED [Re: Marty]  
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 5,949
Diane Campbell Offline
Diane Campbell  Offline
Oh damn. What can we do to help these people?

#416358 - 09/17/11 12:45 AM Re: BOATING ACCIDENT LEAVES TWO PEOPLE INJURED [Re: Marty]  
Joined: Dec 2006
Posts: 1,044
BrusselSprout Offline
BrusselSprout  Offline
So so horrible. Are they being transported to a hospital in VA? Or being treated here?

#416361 - 09/17/11 12:53 AM Re: BOATING ACCIDENT LEAVES TWO PEOPLE INJURED [Re: Marty]  
Joined: May 2011
Posts: 1,520
Bear Offline
Bear  Offline
thats messed could have just as easily been any of us going for that afternoon dip off the dock...50 feet past the end of our local docks is nothing...jesus

#416367 - 09/17/11 06:47 AM Re: BOATING ACCIDENT LEAVES TWO PEOPLE INJURED [Re: Marty]  
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 492
catdance62 Offline
catdance62  Offline
that is just so awful. Those poor people.

#416372 - 09/17/11 07:43 AM Re: BOATING ACCIDENT LEAVES TWO PEOPLE INJURED [Re: Marty]  
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 57,816
Marty Offline
Marty  Offline

Two seriously injured in boat accident

Two US Nationals were injured whilst snorkeling on the south end of Ambergris Caye. At about 12:30pm on Friday, September 16, 2011, The San Pedro Sun received word that there were two injured individuals at the Caye Caulker Water Taxi (CCWT) terminal. Further investigation revealed that the CCWT boat captain noticed two people signaling for help in the water. The CCWT boat that was heading toward the island saw the injured people and stopped to offer assistance. They noticed that the male victim was bleeding profusely and had lost his right leg. His companion was also injured.

Both were quickly transported to the CCWT terminal where they were transferred into a waiting taxi using lounge chairs. They were quickly driven off to the San Pedro PolyClinic II for medical attention.

Eye witness, Mr. Wolfgang Wade informed The Sun that the two individuals were snorkeling in front of the dock at the hotel they were staying at. Wade explained that he saw a San Pedro Belize Express vessel drive by approximately 50 feet away from the dock and ran over the snorkelers. In his opinion, Mr. Wade stated that he believed the boat was extremely close to the dock and that ordinarily, vessels travel much further out at sea. He further stated that the vessel that caused the accident eventually returned, but by that time, the injured tourists had already been taken aboard the Caye Caulker Water Taxi boat. The San Pedro Sun is awaiting word from the San Pedro Police Department regarding the events that transpired on the water.

The victims were later discovered to be honeymooners, 31-year-old Rob Leonard and 32-year-old Dana Leonard of Virginia, USA. The couple was reportedly on their last day of honeymoon in the country. According to Doctor Javier Zuniga, attending doctor at the San Pedro PolyClinic II, Mr. Leonard sustained a serious injury to his right lower leg, with an amputation at the knee level. He also sustained lacerations to his right wrist. His wife, Dana sustained superficial injuries to her right wrist as well. As per the possibility of salvaging Mr. Leonard’s leg, Dr. Zuniga informed that unfortunately, that will not be possible. Dr. Zuniga also stated that the application of a tourniquet to the injury sustained by Rob Leonard is quite possibly what saved his life. Leonard lost massive amounts of blood, but was stabilized before being flown out to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital for further treatment. His wife Dana was stabilized and also flown for further treatment.

The captain of the San Pedro Belize Express vessel, Mr. Anthony Ortiz, is currently under investigation. The San Pedro Sun will follow up on this story.

San Pedro Sun

A honeymoon vacation for a couple of tourists in San Pedro ends abruptly in a horrific accident at sea that has left one man without his lower right leg and a woman suffering from lacerations to her wrist after a water taxi runs them over while they enjoyed an afternoon of snorkeling, on Friday, September 16, 2011.

It was the San Pedro Belize Express Water Taxi’s mid-day run from Caye Caulker to San Pedro that was involved in this horrific accident that occurred just a couple of miles from the water taxi’s terminal in downtown San Pedro. A passenger aboard the San Pedro Belize Express Water Taxi told Ambergris Today that the passengers and crew members were terrified to learn that the vessel had just run over a couple of people just after feeling and hearing a loud thump on the boat. The 38-foot, three outboard motor engine vessel had just run over the couple.

Apparently the captain of the boat was not able to see two tourists who were snorkeling out from shore in the busy and heavily trafficked water lane of San Pedro, Ambergris Caye. This took place in front of Carib Island Resort between 11:45a.m. and 12:15p.m. The water taxi ran over Rob Leonard, 31, and Dana Sniflet, 32, amputating Rob just above the knee of his right leg and injuring Jane on her wrist. Passengers on the boat indicate that the water taxi was not travelling close to the piers and was far from shore, on its usual course.

Ambergris Today

#416375 - 09/17/11 07:52 AM Re: BOATING ACCIDENT LEAVES TWO PEOPLE INJURED [Re: Marty]  
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 57,816
Marty Offline
Marty  Offline

Terrible Tourist Accident In San Pedro

There was a terrible accident in the sea off Sothern San Pedro today and it has left a tourist maimed.

Honeymooners, 31-year-old Rob Leonard and 32-year-old Dana Leonard of Virginia arrived in Belize city today on a wings Of Hope Air Ambulance. Rob Leonard lost his leg below the knee and his wife received lacerations to her hand when a boat ran over them.

According to the San Pedro Sun, they were injured while snorkeling on the south end of Ambergris Caye around noon today. They were picked up by a Caye Caulker Water Taxi boat whose Captain saw them in distress. Rob Leonard was bleeding profusely from his leg. They were taken to the San Pedro PolyClinic for attention and then transferred to the KHMH in Belize City.

An eyewitness told the Sun that the couple was snorkeling in front of the dock at their hotel when a commercial vessel passed particularly close to the dock and ran them over. The couple was reportedly on its last day of honeymoon.

Dr. Zuniga at the Polyclinic told the Sun that that there is no hope to save Rob Leonard's lower leg below the knee and the application of a tourniquet to the injury is quite possibly what saved his life because he was losing massive amounts of blood.

Channel 7

#416388 - 09/17/11 08:06 AM Re: BOATING ACCIDENT LEAVES TWO PEOPLE INJURED [Re: Marty]  
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 57,816
Marty Offline
Marty  Offline

A US couple enjoying their honeymoon in the Jewel was seriously injured at sea. A water taxi ran over them as they snorkeledoff San Pedro at around mid-day. Rob Leonard’s leg was sliced by the water taxi while his wife Dana was also injured. The couple was airlifted to Belize City for urgent medical treatment. News Five’s Isani Cayetano reports.

Isani Cayetano, Reporting

A boating accident off the southern coast of San Pedro near Suya Tours at midday has left an American couple, visiting from Virginia, seriously injured. Shortly after twelve o’clock today thirty-one year old Rob Leonard and his wife Dana, who are honeymooning in Belize, were snorkeling when they were ran over by a water taxi belonging to San Pedro Belize Express. The vessel had just sped past another passenger boat driven at the time by Andrew Logan when its rotors caught the unsuspecting tourists.

Andrew Logan, Captain, Caye Caulker Water Taxi

“Going towards San Pedro a boat came past me, it went flying towards San Pedro and upon going on to San Pedro the boat slowed down so I was thinking that [it was] an engine failure but when I noticed clearly [there were] some people inside the water waving. So I approached them and I realized that there was a pool of blood around and the people were asking me for help so I went and I helped. When I went closer I saw [that] the guy didn’t have a leg. His right leg was gone.”

Andrew Logan

Leonard was immediately placed near the stern of this boat owned by Caye Caulker Water Taxi. His right lower leg below the knee was severed during the incident and a tourniquet had to be applied to stop the profuse bleeding.

Andrew Logan

“I took off my belt and I give it to the guy downstairs so he could tie it so the blood could stop pouring and that was it. It was pretty frightening to see somebody without a leg so, [but] on the other hand I’m a captain so I’ve got to keep my [composure] steady my calm together, get my things together and assist because it could have been me as well.”

Dana Leonard received superficial injuries to her right wrist and she, along with her husband, were rushed to the San Pedro Polyclinic before being airlifted by a waiting Tropic Air plane to Belize City.

Andrew Logan

“We pulled the guy to the back of the boat, rendered assistance and we took him directly to San Pedro [after] which the Polyclinic [personnel] took him from there and I don’t know what else happened from there.”

Isani Cayetano

“More or less where did this accident take place near the island?”

Andrew Logan

“This is the south point of San Pedro in front of Suya’s Adventures. And that was pretty close where that accident happened.”

Isani Cayetano

“And these tourists were snorkeling?”

Andrew Logan

“Yeah, they were snorkeling.”

Isani Cayetano

“Give us a description of the vessel that actually ran over these tourists.”

Andrew Logan

“Well it’s an outboard machine boat, it’s a speedboat with thirty-eight feet, two, two hundred [horsepower] Yamaha [engines] on it. That’s about the best of it.”

Boat captain Anthony Ortiz is currently under investigation and it is unclear at this time whether any charges will be brought against him. Reporting for News Five, I am Isani Cayetano.

The couple was scheduled to conclude their honeymoon in Belize and return to the US on Saturday. But all that has now changed.

Channel 5

#416399 - 09/17/11 08:43 AM Re: BOATING ACCIDENT LEAVES TWO PEOPLE INJURED [Re: Marty]  
Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 1,818
JZB Offline
JZB  Offline
What an absolutely horrible thing to happen. Whoever is responsible for quickly getting these two out of the water and applying a tourniquet so well deserves a pat on the back for saving the man’s life. By first hand accounts I heard the Polyclinic did a fast and efficient job. They are truly an asset to this island. TravelinMan1 is also doing what he can to help out the Leonard’s while they are in the hospital and just ‘being there’ for them.

I hope they recover quickly (physically and emotionally) and travel home safely. This week I plan on putting a sign on the end of my dock ‘beware of boat traffic’ and encourage all other rental homes, hotels and condo-tels to remind their guests about the increasing boat traffic out there.

Joined: May 2011
Posts: 1,520
Bear Offline
Bear  Offline
JZB I'm sure this will now be a topic for our annual meeting as well. Is there no distance requirements for the commercial water taxis to maintain off the beaches or docks?...just askin. The few times we've taken the WT to BC it seemed we were well offshore.

Last edited by Bear; 09/17/11 08:59 AM.
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