As of Friday morning, Missouri officials say 17 are confirmed dead after a duck boat that had been carrying 31 passengers capsized in Table Rock Lake outside of Branson. "Out of 11 of us, only two of us surviving - that's me and my nephew", said Tia. Thirty-one people were on board at the time. Fourteen survived, Stone County Sheriff Doug Rader said.
Paul Lemus says he thought it would be fun to take his wife and their five kids on a duck boat ride.
This is still an early investigation in which the Stone County Sheriff said he doesn't have all the details. She revealed that the captain told them life jackets weren't necessary before they set out.
Investigators blamed stormy weather for accident, with reported winds in the area of up 65 miles per hour. In total, 17 people died, including 9 members of the same family. Rader declined to give an age range of the passengers or elaborate on whether they were local or tourists.
Tia Coleman was married to Glenn Coleman; the surviving nephew, whose name has not been released, was Angela's son, the Star reports.
"Usually the lake is very placid and it's not a long tour, they go in and kind of around an island and back". He said he has not spoken to the survivors yet. Video posted on social media shows that boat making it to shore, as well as the winds and waves attacking the boat.
Missouri Gov. Mike Parson held a news conference alongside Rader at the Branson Belle Showboat, 4800 Missouri Highway 165, on the east edge of the lake.
Wade said he performed CPR on some of the victims.
She said the captain of the boat told them when they were in the lake not to put their life jackets on, an action she believed cost lives. He said he was about to start CPR when an EMT arrived and took over. While he doesn't know the condition of the other patients he worked on after they left the scene, Wade said at least two of his other patients were alive when he passed care along to emergency responders.
The National Transportation Safety Board was to send a team early Friday to investigate the incident, the United States agency said. He wrote, "My deepest sympathies to the families and friends of those involved in the awful boat accident which just took place in Missouri".
"Our number one priority is the families and our employees that were affected by this tragic accident", said Suzanne Smagala-Potts a spokeswoman for Ripley Entertainment, which owns the Ride The Ducks operation in Branson.
Another family member Carolyn Coleman stated two of her brother-in-laws had died in the accident.
Bob and Judy Williams were married for more than 30 years and lived in Branson, Richardson said.
Duck boats, which can travel on land and in water, have been involved in other deadly incidents in the past.
In 1999, a boat sank near Hot Springs, Arkansas, which also killed 13 people.
Safety advocates have sought improvements since the Arkansas deaths.
For now, we should expect to hear more critics calling for better tour boat safety.
Strong waves capsized the boat during a severe storm.