14-year-old boy dies after falling from boat driven by his father and being hit by propellor


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The Independent Online

A teenage boy has died after he fell from a boat driven by his father and was apparently hit by its propeller, police said today.

The 14-year-old was enjoying a ride from the Dorset coast to The Needles landmark off the Isle of Wight with two of his school friends also on board when the accident happened yesterday afternoon.

It appears the boy and one of his friends, who was also 14, fell into the sea.

The friend suffered serious but not life-threatening injuries.

Police said there are no suspicious circumstances but they are investigating exactly how the two boys ended up in the water.

The third boy, also aged 14, and the dead boy's father, who is in his 50s and owned the rigid hull inflatable boat (RHIB) managed to stay on board.

All four are from Surrey, police said.

The dead boy, who has not been named, was airlifted to Southampton General Hospital by Coastguard helicopter but could not be saved.

The other injured boy was taken to shore by RNLI lifeboat and is in St Mary's Hospital on the Isle of Wight.

Immediate next-of-kin have been informed the boy's name will not be released until all formal identification procedures have been completed, a police spokesman said.

An initial post-mortem examination will take place in the next few days.

Senior investigating officer Detective Inspector Floyd Higginson, from Hampshire Police, said: "Although the death is not being treated as suspicious, it is routine procedure for specialist detectives to make initial inquiries into the sudden death of someone aged under 18.

"We are providing support for the other three people on board the boat to help ensure their welfare, and to establish the exact circumstances surrounding the death.

"The rigid hull inflatable boat was taken by Hampshire Constabulary's Marine Unit to Hamble from Yarmouth on the Isle of Wight to be secured as evidence pending further inquiries.

"Police would like to thank HM Coastguard, the RNLI and the NHS for their considerable assistance during the response to this emergency."

Police will prepare a file for the coroner, who has been informed. HM Coastguard has notified the Marine Accident Investigation Branch.