Riverboat loses power, drifts from Nebraska to Iowa

AP News
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Posted: Jul 30, 2016 8:19 AM

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Three people were injured when a riverboat carrying 135 passengers struck a riverbank in Omaha, Nebraska, lost power and drifted across the Missouri River before coming to rest near a park in Council Bluffs, Iowa.

All three were taken to hospitals, and one man had a head injury, Omaha police Sgt. Bill Dropinski told the Omaha World-Herald. No one had life-threatening injuries.

Officials say the River City Star riverboat was turning around shortly after 10 p.m. when it struck rocks on the Nebraska side of the river.

"It was a different sound to the engine right away," passenger Ruth Nelson told KETV-TV, adding later, "One girl in our group said she saw the trees on the shoreline coming at us fast and that didn't seem right."

Jill Stone and her boyfriend, Robert Black, were on the top deck when the crash happened.

"It was like dominoes," Black told the World-Herald, describing people being tossed around.

After the crash, the boat lost power and drifted across the river to Council Bluffs.

Once the riverboat came to rest, firefighters helped passengers evacuate via a makeshift ramp onto the banks of the Tom Hanafan River's Edge Park.