Politics

Missouri Lawmakers Want Congressional Action After Duck Boat Tragedy

Comes after 17 people died, including nine from the same family

Rep. Billy Long said, “We’ve got to do whatever we can to prevent anything similar to this happening” of the duck boat sinking in his district. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Rep. Billy Long wants congressional action after a duck boat sinking in his district killed 17 people.

“We’ve got to do whatever we can to prevent anything similar to this happening, if at all possible,” the Missouri Republican said.

On Thursday, a “Ride the Ducks” vehicle sank during a sudden thunderstorm on Table Rock Lake near Branson, Missouri. Of the 17 people killed, nine were from the same family.

Long said there were 80-mph winds on the lake, which he said was “something none of us had ever seen from the time that the lake filled,” OzarksFirst reported.

Long, who sits on the House Energy and Commerce Committee, said amphibious duck boats will not on the water until it is safe to do so.

He said he is not prepared to call for hearings until the National Transportation Safety Board conducts an investigation, which Long said must be thorough.

Forty people have been killed in duck boat accidents since 1999, NBC News reported.

Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill said she is examining legislation to increase safety on amphibious vehicles.

Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley, who is running for the Republican nomination to challenge McCaskill, said the NTSB and Coast Guard are handling the investigation.

Republican Sen. Roy Blunt said the incident was a “tragedy that never should have happened” and he was willing to “pursue whatever action is necessary.”

Both Blunt and McCaskill visited the scene on Friday.

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