Three Injured in Niagara River Boating Collision

July 22, 2013 Updated Jul 22, 2013 at 9:19 AM EDT

By Rachel Elzufon

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July 22, 2013 Updated Jul 22, 2013 at 9:19 AM EDT


City of Tonawanda, NY (WKBW) -- A collision on the Niagara River Saturday night left a man seriously injured and a couple with minor injuries.

An eastbound vessel hit a vessel traveling westbound.

Two people on the boat the was hit were treated for minor injuries. A woman was taken to ECMC.

The striking boat landed on the shoreline of Grand Island. A man was found inside and taken to ECMC with severe facial injuries.

First responders spent hours scouring the waters for anymore possible victims.

Even during major events, police rarely see these types of accidents on the Niagara River.

When first responders hit the waterways, they usually respond to an accident caused by hidden obstacles underneath the waters.

Lt. Scott Sheehan with the City of Tonawanda Police Department says, "There's a couple reefs, a couple construction sites along the river, along the Grand Island turn."

"Anytime you puncture a hole in your vessel and it starts taking on water, it becomes dangerous," Sheehan explains.

Sheehan says safety precautions include keeping a cell phone charged, do not speed, keep safety vests accessible and never travel alone.

Night time can be the most dangerous. Witnesses say the striking vessel had no lights on at the time of Saturday night's collision. Police add that puts everyone at risk, from other boaters to first responders.