PIERMONT, NY – Alcohol appears to have been a factor in an accident that killed two passengers on July 26, 2013 when the speedboat they were aboard crashed into a barge at the Tappan Zee Bridge in Piermont, NY. The city of Piermont is located in Rockland County, New York on the Hudson River about 26 miles north of New York City.
The accident happened at about 10:40 p.m. when a group of friends were taking a short trip in a 21 foot speedboat on the Hudson River between Piermont and Tarrytown, NY. The evening was to be part of a pre-wedding celebration to be held a couple of weeks away on August 10, 2013, but, tragically, resulted in the deaths of the 30 year-old bride-to-be, Lindsey Stewart and the 30-year-old best man, Mark Lennon, both from Piermont.
A route from Piermont to Tarrytown that goes under the Tappan Zee Bridge is approximately 4 nautical miles. There were a total of six people in the boat at the time, the driver and five passengers when the boat struck the barge and ejected two of passengers, who were killed in the crash.
The bodies were recovered in the following days. All the remaining people aboard the small boat were also injured in the accident.
The media reported that it was dark when the accident occurred, but there were lights on the barge at the time. Authorities suspect that the boat operator was intoxicated at the time and has been charged with vehicular manslaughter as well as vehicular assault.
The barge contained construction materials intended for a construction project on the bridge. Several barges were lashed together at the bridge.
The lighting requirements for all the barges were checked on the Saturday following the accident and were reported to be in order.
Published by maritime lawyer Gordon, Elias & Seely, LLP