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Wreck of Sunken Cabin Cruiser Towed to Oyster Bay

Three children died in doomed vessel when it capsized and sank July 4; Police continue probe for cause.

The listing wreck of the Kandi Won was towed intact to a marina in Oyster Bay Wednesday afternoon where authorities will hoist it from the water and begin to examine the doomed pleasure craft.

With helicopters flying above Oyster Bay and onlookers gawking from the shore, a parade of police marine units towed the vessel inland near the Theodore Roosevelt Marina at about 5 p.m.

The vessel, listing badly to starboard but its flying bridge and antenae intact, was dragged into the nearby Sewanhaka Yacht Club. There, it will be hoisted to dry dock by use of a special crane.

Police will then transport the wreck by a tractor-trailer to a Nassau Police crime lab on the South Shore.

Police spokesmen said the boat will be examined for clues into what caused it to capsize and sink in the darkness July 4, just after the end of an annual fireworks display on the water. The process could take a week or more.

Authorities have said 27 people were aboard the vessel when it Three The other 24 survived.

Earlier Wednesday, a team of experts from the FBI managed to inflate flotation balls beneath the sunken Kandi Won, the 34-foot Silverton cabin cruiser. The dive teams had been hampered by poor visibility 60 feet beneath Oyster Bay.

The wreck had been lying on a sandbar that kicked up underwater clouds of dust each time a diver stepped on the sea bed. 

The task wasn't easy.

First, water inside the vessel had to be pumped out, making the boat more buoyant.

The search and recovery efforts began Monday when the FBI was called in to assist in the project. Divers spent seven hours at the site on Tuesday, but could not raise the wreck.

The cause of the wreck remains under investigation. The meticulous efforts to raise the boat are designed to preserve any evidence the doomed pleasure craft may yield.

Jonathan Dees July 12, 2012 at 01:05 AM
This tragedy had to be caused by some kind of mechanical or structural failure. Why didn't it capsize and sink on the way over from Huntington Harbor if it had too many people on it? That would have had to be a humungous wake to knock that thing over if it wasn't already taking on water. Prayers go out to the families.
leapinglaughter July 12, 2012 at 04:46 AM
I bet they're not going to find anything wrong with that boat. I read that the recommended capacity of the boat was only about half as many passengers as they had on it, and that the boat is naturally topheavy to begin with because of its design. If you overload a boat like that, it would only require a small mistake in your reaction to a wake to roll it over. It's sad, but maybe people will gain some respect for the water and take some boating safety classes now that something like this has happened close to home.
Dave Bruyn July 12, 2012 at 11:01 AM
Thanks, Jonathan It was reported by an onlooker that the boat capsized in slow motion. That would indicate a huge amount of water in the bilge. A wave or wake might have triggered the event, but it sounds to me like it was swamping from a leak.
new guy July 12, 2012 at 04:12 PM
dave, if thats true then that would mean the boat was overloaded with people(maybe a few too many in the flying bridge to see the fireworks) and it also had water in the hull. wouldnt the boat sit way low in the water? my point is wouldnt it have been very obvious. 17 too many people and 8lbs per gallon for water that may have been leaking into the hull. either by a leak or the bilge pump wasnt working? just a very sad preventable story.
Jonathan Dees July 12, 2012 at 04:49 PM
There should have been some kind of alarm built into the hull to indicate the boat was taking on water, if that's the case. Not sure if it's mandatory, but could be another tragic circumstance.
Dave Bruyn July 12, 2012 at 06:38 PM
It is a tragedy no matter what the findings. I'm not sure what would be obvious to those folks who were enjoying the fireworks display that night (in the dark). Yes, I'm sure it would have been sitting way low in the water. While the boat MAY have been overloaded, I don't think it is at all as it has been made out to be. The purported capacity of only ten is way conservative for a boat of this size at 34 feet and a beam of 12"6". Some say the boat was top heavy by design. I doubt that strongly. We have now learned that ten of those passengers were children who would typically be lighter. It will be interesting to see what the authorities finally say about that. My big question is where is the floatation on this boat??? Why did it sink to the bottom? Nobody has raised that question. And...this reportedly was recently purchased boat. Did a marine surveyor inspect it and if so, did they look at the report? Was this boat seaworthy when it left the dock?
douglas stretton July 12, 2012 at 07:21 PM
To Dave; a boat is not required to have a surveyor look at it before purchase. The boat holds between 75 and 100 gallons of fuel. How much fuel was onboard, then add 8 pounds per gallon. Plus 27 people, coolers, ice, and whatever else was onboard they brought. I'm not trying to infer anything about drinking or drugs. And no doubt a large wave contributed to the accident. So many boats trying to leave an event at the same time, in the dark, deep water, wind, and no speed restriction in the area. It was a chain of events that led to the disaster...that began at the dock. It was poor judgement to start with. I really doubt the evidence will reveal any leak in the boats hull and that it had taken on any water prior to the accident. Please note...all boats float...but not all boats float when they are filled with water. A 34 foot Silverton is a very seaworthy boat and built very well. But so was the Titanic.
new guy July 12, 2012 at 07:31 PM
Good questions dave.
Dave Bruyn July 12, 2012 at 08:17 PM
Hi, Doug We meet again! I HOPE I didn't imply that a marine survey was MANDATORY. I just think that it would have been prudent to have a professional survey on a 28 year old boat purchase and thought the possibility might exist that such a survey had been conducted, and if so, maybe some light would be shed upon this tragedy. I really feel that everyone would like to rewind to July 3 for a do-over, especially the families of those lost children. I know i would. My heart goes out to all those people.
Jason Molinet July 12, 2012 at 09:49 PM
We'll have a new update shortly.
new guy July 12, 2012 at 11:44 PM
i see nothing on the news yet....what do you know?
Jason Molinet July 13, 2012 at 12:03 AM
Here's the latest: http://patch.com/A-vYJR
Don Thomas July 15, 2012 at 03:35 AM
I have this same boat only its a 1985. This style was made for about 6 yrs and there are hundreds of them still out there. I have been in water so rough with her that the fly bridge was touching the water from side to side and have never felt that she would capsize. I think that poor judgement and seamanship are a factor here. I can't imagine having 27 people on my boat. There just isn't enough room. People get a false sense of security with larger boats and think they have a lot of realstate on the water. When you lose respect for the water, its just a matter of time for something to go wrong.
Capt quinn July 16, 2012 at 07:20 PM
No mechanical damage is needed for this to happen there clearly were way to many onboard that boat was riding lower then designed for it was a tragedy waiting to happen the skipper and the owner should be held liable why is common sense thrown out the window and never a bit of accountability held?? People move around put wrong amount of weight to one side and any sharp turn or rough water and yes she will list and then roll cause she is sitting too low ....this is a well made vessel I have worked on boats and operated them for years and would take this one into nasty seas if I had to knowing she could Handel them but you screw with too much ballast and it's game over......family members were quoted as saying there were many long time boat owners aboard well shame on all them for not one saying hey let's look at this before we launch. And I'm sure someone saw that boat earlier in the night and still fell distraught for not saying something coast guard would probably have have put an end to that trip.....the one I asked said he would not comment it is a tragedy since three innocent children lost there life, and one mom said we thought the cabin was safe??? The whole boat was just a disaster in the making, once the show was over and multiple wakes in different directions?? Farewell to you all me fair Spanish ladies.
bk July 17, 2012 at 04:23 PM
Funny thing no one here mentioned is that Almost ALL the Police, FBI , Media on the Bay retriving the kandi won were NOT wearing PFD's! UMMM? policing more is A Joke!!!
bk July 17, 2012 at 04:50 PM
I have counted 10 people on the police boat in photo 6 and only 1 is wearing a life jacket! and one on the Constable's boat. The 2 guys on the Kandi won NONE and the two on the whaler NONE!

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