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Boatloads Of Trouble: D.C. Police Slam Into 2 Boats On Potomac River

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Bui Linh 370x278 XL (2) Linh Bui
Linh Bui joined WJZ Eyewitness News in July 2013 as a reporter/weekend...
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WASHINGTON (WJZ) — Incredible video of a multi-boat accident on the Potomac River. A Washington, D.C. police harbor boat smashes into two vessels, causing one of them to nearly sink.

Linh Bui explains how it happened.

Lights on, sirens blaring, D.C. harbor police slam into two boats, including one that Shawn Kuykendall had docked in Georgetown Saturday night.

“Somebody came and said, ‘A boat’s been hit,’” Kuykendall said. “You walk out and the crowd, a hundred people or so, crowded around where our boat was. And the left side’s completely submerged. The boat’s gone and done.”

There were efforts to save the boat, but the huge gash was no match. Water poured in and the boat sank.

Witnesses say harbor police were responding to a distress call of people in the water, and that’s why they left so quickly.

“When he did a full throttle he couldn’t control the boat,” a witness said.

“Swiping in, seemingly for show for the crowd. That’s what witnesses told us,” said Kuykendall.

In cell phone video, you can hear the officer involved in the crash repeatedly tell one of the boat owners to relax. You can hear him ask “Are you injured? Then relax.”

What’s worse for Shawn is he was borrowing the boat from a friend.

“It’s not the call you want to make,” he said.

“It’s not his fault. We’re glad he wasn’t on it,” the boat’s owner, Sheri Saunders, said.

Sunday, crews raised the boat to tow it away.

“Accidents happen. People do stupid things. I’m sure they’ll take care of it and make things right,” said Saunders.

D.C. police and the U.S. Coast Guard are now investigating.

Fortunately, no one was on the two boats when police crashed into them. No injuries were reported.

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