CAPE CORAL, Fla. - A Cape Coral woman is dead after a boating accident on the Caloosahatchee Sunday just after 2p.m. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission says Joshua Emerson, Bill Pigott and Maleah Nowak were heading East on the river when a gust of wind blew an inner tube out of the boat.
The tube's rope wrapped around Nowak's neck and pulled her overboard. First responders rushed to the banks of the Caloosahatchee River near the bridge off highway 31 There they retrieved 23-year old from the water.
"They had an inner tube which they were towing people on in the boat. It blew out and the line that attached the inner tube to the boat wrapped around a young lady's neck and pulled her out of the vessel. She died as a result of those injuries," said Gary Morse with FWC.
Lee County EMS took Nowak and the boat back to Sweetwater Landing Marina.
Multiple agencies, including the Lee County Sheriff's Office and Lee County EMS were on-scene for hours trying to piece together what happened.
"This is not a common accident but boaters need to be aware. The windage can cause some serious problems if equipment is not secured to the vessel. Things can come flying off. They can hurt people. Obviously in this case this is an example of a tragedy the occurred because of a windage issue," Morse said.
Emerson and Pigott were not injured but were understandably too emotional to speak on-camera. The case is still under investigation.