Danish lawmaker calls for ban on jet skis after fatal crash

AP News
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Posted: May 09, 2017 6:32 AM

COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — A Danish lawmaker called Tuesday for a ban on jet skis off the country's coast after two American students were killed in a crash last weekend.

Kenneth Kristensen Berth told The Associated Press that Denmark's 98 municipalities should be able to forbid jet skis but a 2010 Supreme Court ruling allows them, citing European Union rules.

"We should roll it back, so municipalities themselves can ban jet skis near the coasts," said the senior member of the Danish People's Party.

Few in Denmark's Parliament back his idea, however. Many lawmakers say rules forbidding the use of recreational watercraft closer than 300 meters (330 yards) from the coast should be enforced.

The two Americans were killed Saturday evening when a jet ski crashed into their boat in Copenhagen's harbor.

A 24-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of aggravated manslaughter, and for fleeing to a suburban harbor where he was arrested. If found guilty, the man faces up to eight years in jail.

Under present rules, ships, boats and recreational watercraft can only sail at 6 knots (11 kilometers, 7 miles per hour) inside Copenhagen harbor. The jet ski's speed at the time of the accident was not clear.

Danish police have not identified the victims but Stonehill College in Massachusetts said one was Linsey Malia of Easton, Massachusetts. She was in Copenhagen with the Study Abroad in Scandinavia foundation.

The Copenhagen-based foundation said seven of its students were on "a personal excursion" when their boat was hit by "a high-speed jet ski." The other students were briefly hospitalized then released.