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Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Organizers show video footage of rescue efforts made in fatal boat racing accident



With reporting from Sowmya Sundar

Following an internal investigation, the Qatar Marine Sports Federation (QMSF) has asserted that timely rescue efforts were indeed made during a pleasure boat racing accident that resulted in the death of Rashid Abullah al-Mansouri nearly two weeks ago.

Initial reports said coast guard divers immediately rushed to bring the 34-year-old Qatari man to shore after his boat hit a wave and flipped several times, but al-Mansouri’s sailing partner and other witnesses said official efforts were limited and late, due in part to an absence of a professional rescue team onsite.

However, citing footage taken during the accident, Khalid bin Arhama al-Kuwari, a QMSF board member and Head of Pleasure Boats, Pro Class and Formula One Racing, told Doha News“The reports are untrue and we have evidence to prove it.”

‘It was a question of saving someone’s life’

According to a QMSF review of footage taken from four videocameras stationed at Katara during the event, two Coast Guard boats reached al-Mansouri in less than a minute. However, the racer was taken to shore on the boat of a Kuwaiti competitor.

That was done for expediency’s sake, Al-Kuwari told reporters during a press conference yesterday, adding that six Red Crescent rescue personnel accompanied al-Mansouri to shore on the competitor’s boat.

“It was a question of saving someone’s life and we cannot say, ‘you cannot take him on his boat (Kuwait driver’s boat), shift him to the Qatar Red Crescent boat,’ ” the Peninsula reports him as saying.

Al-Kuwari also said that three rescue boats were present during the racing event.

Stressing that the accident was caused by speeding and lack of control over the boat, al-Kuwari added that QMSF will seek to reduce speed limits in future races.


Credit: Photo by Aju on Twitter

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