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2 injured, 1 dead after boats collide in Martin County

Posted at 12:00 PM, Apr 03, 2018
and last updated 2018-04-04 10:58:27-04

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) is looking into why two boats collided on the St. Lucie River around 11:30 Tuesday morning.  FWC says 79-year-old Reynold Miranda, 74-year-old Anthony Rego and 76-year-old Matthew Jones were injured in the incident. Jones was transported to Martin Memorial Hospital and died as a result of his injuries.

Martin County Deputy Michael Libasci was off duty fishing when his plans abruptly changed.

"I heard a very large collision.  There was no mistaking it and I saw a boat that was capsized or appeared to be capsized to me," he said.

Deputy Libasci quickly turned his boat around and raced to the scene in the St. Lucie River to see if everybody was OK.

“It was a very very horrific crash.”

No one was in the water, but one person needed immediate help.

“I began to render first aid.  Subject injured pretty badly.  So I tried slowly the bleeding down, keeping his airway open," said Deputy Libasci.

Deputy Libasci stayed on the victims' boat as it was brought on shore.  The man was conscious and breathing, but not alert.

The collision taking place in an area boaters know as Hells Gate, off Sewall’s Point.  That left boaters like Jose Abrego with more questions.

“If it happened at Hells Gate, I really don’t understand how that happened.  There’s no way.  You can see everybody and there’s no way you can do something like that," said Abrego.

We've learned there was more than one person on board the boat with the more serious injury.


MARTIN COUNTY, Fla. -- Two people were injured Tuesday morning in a boating incident in Martin County.

Martin County Fire Rescue said two boats were on the St. Lucie River when they collided.  Two patients were brought to Sandsprit Park and then taken to Martin Memorial South Hospital.

One of the victims suffered serious injuries in the crash.

Stay with and NewsChannel 5 for more details as they become available..