Boat accident in Pittsburgh on the Ohio river last night (boat vs barge)

boatman37

Well-Known Member
Jun 6, 2015
4,239
pittsburgh
Boat Info
2006 Crownline 250CR. 5.7 Merc BIII
Previous: 1986 Sea Ray 250 Sundancer. 260 Merc Alpha 1 Gen 1
Engines
5.7 Merc BIII
Wasn't as bad as it sounds. Don't know all the details but it was about 1:00AM this morning and according to the news the boat was dead in the middle of the river. In the video you can see a generator on the swim platform and they said they were charging the batteries when the barge was approaching. Looks like it hit dead center and they said they were blowing their horn for 10 minutes as the barge pushed them down the river. The video shows the port side of the boat tilted over pretty far. Not sure if water was coming in. I guess there were no injuries.

https://www.wpxi.com/news/top-stori...-ohio-river-when-barge-crushes-boat/973302919
 
That the reason to have DEDICATED starting batteries (2) and DEDICATED house batteries. If you have to use a generator on the swim platform to charge engine batteries , your already an accident waiting to happen
 
Those folks are extremely lucky. Time to buy lotto tickets.
 
yeah. we have a guy at our marina with a similar size boat (~25') and he has no alternator or bilge pumps. Said he hasn't had them for years. His boat spends most of its time in the slip.
 
I was thinking VHF on channel 16 to call the tug might have helped, but the article said they didn't see the barge coming. They were probably too fixated on getting their boat restarted to maintain a proper lookout. They are very lucky to have survived!
 
i was thinking the same thing about the VHF but remembered the batteries were dead. I'm sure there was probably enough juice to run a radio but i think alot of people around here think a radio isn't needed and won't spend the money on one. one of the biggest reasons i insist on a radio is because of the commercial traffic we see around here
 
A Securite call on 13 and 16 from a hand held vhf along with a GPS position could have been helpful. ALWAYS have a hand held back up vhf in case of main power loss.
 
I was thinking VHF on channel 16 to call the tug might have helped, but the article said they didn't see the barge coming. They were probably too fixated on getting their boat restarted to maintain a proper lookout. They are very lucky to have survived!

A Securite call on 13 and 16 from a hand held vhf along with a GPS position could have been helpful. ALWAYS have a hand held back up vhf in case of main power loss.

Depending on size, weight and rate of travel, sometimes it can take MILES for those things to stop, or even slow down for that matter.
But I definitely agree, everyone should carry a backup hand held.
 
I think alot of people around here think a VHF is not needed on the rivers. I try to stress to new boaters how important a VHF is. However unlikely it may be but if a barge breaks loose I want to know about it long before I can see it. Also, a couple years ago I saw the water rescue boat go flying down towards the dam. Turns out a boat broke down and was headed towards the dam. If they had a VHF I'm sure one of the other boaters could have got to them much quicker.
 
I'm just wondering if the Bayliner had any navigational lights on? The boat is dead in the water and they are running a portable generator to recharge their batteries? Something is way off with that part of the story.

Blowing their horn ....if that really happened was a waste of time given the size of that barge.
 
Articles like these drive me crazy. Can I vent?

"A barge struck a boat overnight on the Ohio River and three people had to be rescued, authorities said."

If it had been a single barge that had broken loose from a fleet or a tow, this would be correct. As it happened, the clearly clueless captain was in fact hit by a tow. Towboats push a "tow" of barges. Do they not??

That's it. I feel better now.
 
In our 4 or 5 years boating on the Ohio I have seen several boats anchored right in the middle of the river. I even see alot of them shut their engines off and drift down the middle of the river. I respect these barges/tugs and how hard it is for them to change course. I stay out of their way. I don't even cruise in the middle of the river. If possible I stay off to one side just in case. From what I understand this happened on the Monongahela river which is narrower than the Ohio so that might not have been an option.
 
A Securite call on 13 and 16 from a hand held vhf along with a GPS position could have been helpful. ALWAYS have a hand held back up vhf in case of main power loss.

A little late to the party here. Agree on the VHF. Will add, for river boaters, it's much more helpful to the towboat captains to be able to broadcast a mile marker (from the river charts) than GPS position.
 
A little late to the party here. Agree on the VHF. Will add, for river boaters, it's much more helpful to the towboat captains to be able to broadcast a mile marker (from the river charts) than GPS position.
agree!
 

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