VIDEO: Civil Wrongful Death Suit in Tugboat Barge vs. Duck Boat/Tour Boat Crash in Delaware River, Philadelphia

Warning: graphic video. Attorneys for the parents of two Hungarian students killed in a Philadelphia collision between a barge and a tour boat have released a new video of the crash only days before a civil wrongful death lawsuit goes to court.

A disturbing video of a crash of a barge and duck boat/tour boat on July 7, 2010 in Philadelphia was released just days before a civil wrongful death is scheduled to begin.

The Philly duck boat crash killed Hungarian students Dora Schwendtner, 16, and Szabolcs Prem, 20, when the disabled duck boat was hit on the Delaware River. The Hungarian students were trapped underwater by overhead canopies that collapsed under the weight of the 80-yard-long barge. The barge also pushed the entire duck boat under water and dumped over thirty people into the Delaware River.


Families filed rongful death lawsuits against K-Sea Transportation of East Brunswick, N.J., which operated the tugboat pushing the barge; ‘Ride the Ducks’ of Norcross, Ga., which operated the tour boat; the city of Philadelphia, which owned the barge; and others.

Attorneys for the victims’ families say passengers were not instructed to wear life preservers until moments before the crash.

The K-Sea Transportation tug boat pilot was allegedly distracted on his cellphone during a family emergency and was not standing on a part of the boat that gave him good visibility of the Delaware River.

The duck boat captain anchored the boat when he mistakenly thought there was an engine fire. In fact, the engine was steaming because someone accidentally left the radiator cap off — allowing engine coolant to evaporate and cause overheating of the engine. Not only was the radiator cap missing, but the duck boat also had no air horn and no communications marine radio.



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