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Thursday, May 26, 2016

Children hurt in boat blast at Okoboji

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Three children received minor injuries following a boat explosion on East Lake Okoboji on Monday afternoon at Camp Foster on the lake's east side.

Maddie Dineen, 14, of Omaha, Neb., Emmy Rush, 14, of Minneapolis, Minn., and Amelia Ambrose, 13, of Omaha, Neb., received burns on their legs following the blast. Emmy and Amelia were treated and released at a hospital in Spirit Lake while Maddie was being kept for observation.

Two camp employees, Jackie Ryan, 22, of Dundee and Neil J. Carroll, 20, of Carroll, were uninjured in the blast. Two of the three children jumped into the water when the explosion happened and the third was able to step on to the dock.

The explosion occurred at approximately 3 p.m. when Carroll attempted to start the boat. The engine cover and two rear seats were blown into the water by the blast. The boat is a 1971 inboard-outboard, 17-foot long Pipestone.

Carroll was able to quickly extinguish the fire with an onboard fire extinguisher, reducing the risk of injury to his passengers and reducing the damage to the boat.

"This is an incident that could have been far worse had the proper safety equipment - in this case the extinguisher - not been available, working and easily accessible. He (Carroll) did an excellent job in reacting so quickly to the situation," said DNR Conservation Officer Jeff Morrison.

Morrison said investigation is continuing to determine what caused the explosion. The group was just heading out on the lake to ski.

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