Contact: Sr. Cpl. Carl Winckoski, Division of Fish and Wildlife Enforcement, 302-739-9913 or 302-542-2115, or Joanna Wilson, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902
Three injured in accident involving Delaware City fireboat
Fish & Wildlife Enforcement charges vessel’s operator with excessive speed
DELAWARE CITY (June 4, 2014) – DNREC Natural Resources Police, Division of Fish and Wildlife Enforcement agents are investigating a boating accident that injured three crew members of the Delaware City Fire Company when their fire-and-rescue vessel struck a rock jetty near the Reedy Point Bridge on the C&D Canal. The accident occurred around midnight June 4 while the Delaware City fireboat was assisting in a search for an overdue recreational boat. The fireboat, a 34-foot Metalcraft Marine aluminum hull vessel, sank as a result of the collision with the jetty.
Fish and Wildlife Enforcement agents at the scene charged the fire boat’s operator, Edward Kalinowski, 62, of Delaware City, with one count of negligence by operating at excessive speed. Kalinowski suffered a broken ankle in the accident. He was treated and released from Christiana Medical Center. A second fire company member was treated there for facial injuries and later released, while the third was kept at the hospital overnight for observation with back and hip injuries.
The Delaware City Fire Company’s fireboat is to be raised from the C&D Canal today by the salvage company Sea Tow. Fish and Wildlife Enforcement’s investigation into the accident is continuing.
The overdue recreational boat that initiated the search and its occupant were later found safe on Delaware Bay, one-half mile from the New Jersey shoreline in Nantuxent Cove, by the Delaware State Police aviation unit. DSP’s marine unit arranged for the vessel, a 20-foot sportfishing boat which was adrift and without power, to be towed back to Port Mahon, from which it was launched Tuesday morning.
The DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife recognizes and thanks the majority of anglers, hunters and boaters who comply with and support Delaware’s fishing, hunting and boating laws and regulations. Citizens are encouraged to report fish and wildlife and boating violations to the Delaware Fish and Wildlife Enforcement Section by calling 302-739-4580. Wildlife violations may also be reported anonymously by calling 800-292-3030 or online at Operation Game Theft.
Vol. 44, No. 187