‘My grandmother’s death was preventable’: Family speaks after tragic boating incident in the Bahamas
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The grand-daughter of 75-year-old Gayle Jarrett who died when a Blue Lagoon boat capsized in the Bahamas, contends her death was preventable.
“That’s up to whoever owns the ferry that the crew is properly prepared for an accident, and they were not prepared for this,” Kayla Estep told CBS News.
Jarrett was the sole passenger on the excursion boat to die as 118 other passengers scurried to stay afloat as the boat sank in waters near Blue Lagoon, just 30 minutes after they set sail on Tuesday.
Jarrett in the bottom deck with Estep and seven other family members, was wearing an oxygen device on her back at the time of the incident when it got caught around a metal as water flooded the sinking vessel.
“Even though she could go without oxygen, the fear I think took over, because the waves kept coming in through the window and taking my grandma and my grandpa underwater, over and over, and my grandmother was stuck,” Estep said.
Just Thursday, two days after the terrifying incident, Commissioner of Police Clayton Fernander in a press conference revealed that Jarrett of Broomfield, did not drown, according to autopsy results. He did not specify the exact cause of death, though.
“There was nothing to cut, no emergency supplies on that ferry,” Estep insisted.
“The very first thing I did was throw a life vest on my grandma.”
Social media videos show a teetering boat as passengers stood on the left side screaming and outfitted with life vests.
“She ended up sliding down to the right side where all the water was.”
“All of the passengers were waiting for crew instruction, and we didn’t get it. Then, one person jumped off the top floor and we all followed,” Estep said.
While scrambling to get her children and other family members off the boat, Estep’s grandfather and father stayed behind, trying to get Jarrett out.
Estep said the captain also tried to assist.
Blue Lagoon said on Sunday, it has launched a “rigorous and independent forensic investigation.”
Featured Image: Gayle Jarrett is shown in happier times