Woman and Child Injured in Jet Ski Explosion

Boating Accident

According to WNEP, a woman and child were injured last Wednesday when the jet ski they were riding on exploded.

About the Jet Ski Accident

Last Wednesday, in Palmyra Township, Pennsylvania, a woman and her child were rushed to the hospital after a jet ski explosion. According to officials from the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission, 43-year-old Rebecca Ruddy and her 7-year-old son both serious injured the explosion which occurred around 8:00am.

They were flown to a hospital near Allentown to be treated for their injuries. Rebecca has injuries to the spine and her son sustained head injuries. Officials tell us it appears that the seat of the jet ski may have been the cause of the problem.

Sometimes gas fumes fill up in the seat creating a potential for an explosion can happen. “When you gas up or you’ve been sitting outside in the sun, take the seat off and expose that motor area,” advised Waterways Conservation Officer Robert Plumb.

Eric Sonteby who owns the Lighthouse Harbor Marina near Hawley, told the extreme heat could also play a role. “Always a good idea to check on the inside of the compartment,” said Sonteby. “With the heat we have been having recently, that, of course, expands the fuel in the fuel tank and if it’s not ventilated properly then there could be an issue.”

Witnesses say that everything was on fire, but the officials acted quickly to clear everything up. The witnesses also accounted that they had never seen anything like it before.

Maritime Accident Statistics

  • The following information was provided by the U.S. Coast Guard:
    • 4,158 boating accidents were reported to the U.S. Coast Guard in 2015, resulting in 626 deaths and 2,613 injuries.
    • In incidents in which cause of death was known, 76% of boating deaths were attributed to drowning.
    • 85% of those drowning victims were not wearing life jackets.
    • 22 children under the age of 13 were killed in boating accidents in 2015.
    • Open motorboats accounted for the highest percent of boating fatalities at 45%


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