IN conservation officers investigating Steuben Co. boating accident, multiple injuries involved

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Photo Supplied / Indiana DNR Law Enforcement District 2

STEUBEN COUNTY, Ind. (WOWO): Indiana Conservation Officers are investigating a Steuben County boating accident that resulted in multiple injuries on Lake Gage.

Officers received a 9-1-1 call Saturday, just after 7:00 p.m., about several people being involved in a boating accident, that were still in the water with possible serious or near fatal injuries.

Emergency crews arrived and several seriously injured people were immediately transported to shore. EMS unites were standing by to tend to their injuries. Two people were flown to Parkview. Others with less serious injuries were transported to a nearby hospital.

The motorboat which was involved in the accident was still running and unmanned, circling the lake at approximately 30 miles per hour. DNR officers were able to slow the runaway boat by throwing a rope into the propeller. Conservation Officer Jake Carlile was able to use a nearby personal watercraft and jump onto the runaway boat. He was then able to take control of the boat and bring it to a stop.

Upon further investigation, police learned the driver of the boat was operating it at a high rate of speed when the boat took a sharp turn, throwing off all 10 people on board. The boat continued at a high rate of speed, causing further serious bodily injury and property damage.

Alcohol was found to be a factor in the accident. Domonique Effinger, 20, of Fort Wayne, the operator of the boat, was arrested for Boating While Intoxicated causing injury and being a Minor in Possession of Alcohol.

Meanwhile, the incident remains under investigation.

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