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Report: Overcrowding Caused L.I. Boating Tragedy

Three Children Killed During July 4th Outing Last Year
Kandi Won is lifted from the waters of the Long Island Sound. (credit: Sophia Hall, WCBS 880)

Kandi Won is lifted from the waters of the Long Island Sound. (credit: Sophia Hall, WCBS 880)

MINEOLA, N.Y. (CBSNewYork/AP) – A report has found that overloading was the primary reason for a Long Island boating accident that claimed the lives of three children.

According to the findings by the Nassau County prosecutor’s office, the 34-foot Silverton Cruiser, called the Kandi Won, was barely stable in calm waters.

The stability analysis determined the boat capsized and sank during a July 4th outing last year in Oyster Bay “as a result of being overloaded and apparently encountering a 90-degree wave.”

“An exhaustive investigation utilizing nationally recognized experts found that a unique combination of circumstances caused this tragedy,” Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice stated.

PHOTOS: ‘Kandi Won’ Pulled Out Of Water

The boat had 27 people on board — including 10 children — when it capsized following the privately financed Dolan family fireworks show, which has been canceled this year.

Three children, 8-year-old Victoria Gaines, 11-year-old Harlie Treanor and 12-year-old David Aureliano, were killed. Investigators said they were trapped in the boat’s cabin when it capsized.

In January, Rice ruled out criminal charges against the owner and operator. The county didn’t state the cause of the accident until now.

The attorney for the owner said there were “contributing factors” not cited by the DA that can be explored in expected civil litigation.

Since the tragedy, new laws and regulations have been enacted to improve boating safety.

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