The Now


Investigation into deadly duck boat capsizing continues as community mourns

17 people, including children and seniors, killed
Posted at 2:13 PM, Jul 20, 2018

Seventeen people are confirmed dead after a tourist duck boat capsized Thursday night.

The victims included children and senior citizens. Fourteen people survived, according to officials.

Outside Ride the Ducks in Branson business, mourners laid flowers on the windshields of vehicles presumed to belong to the victims.  

As the community continues to grieve, an investigation into the tragedy continues. The Coast Guard, officials with the National Transportation Safety Board and local authorities are involved in the probe.

Branson was under a Severe Thunderstorm Warning about 30 minutes prior to the boat capsizing.

President of Ripley Entertainment, the parent company of Ride the Ducks in Branson, spoke Friday about the tragedy. He said the waters were calm when the amphibious vehicles went into the lake.

"My understanding is that we'll be working with the National Transportation Safety Board and the Coast Guard, who regulate our industry,” said Jim Pattison, Jr. “But it was almost like a micro burst that was that we had boats out there. Was perfectly calm and we had a high speed wind system that just came out of nowhere and out of that storm front and uh....there we were." 

Ride the Ducks of Branson posted a message expressing their condolences Friday morning.

“This incident has deeply affected all of us. Words cannot convey how profoundly our hearts are breaking,” read their message in part.

Officials say people can call 417-337-8515 for information on their loved ones.