10/04/2010 // West Palm Beach, FL, US // Sandra Quinlan // Sandra Quinlan

Philadelphia, PA—The city of Philadelphia was named in a recent personal injury lawsuit, which was filed in connection with a fatal July 7, 2010 collision involving an amphibious vessel and tugboat. According to an October 1, 2010 Associated Press report, the captain of the capsized “duck boat” sued the city and operators of the tugboat, claiming he may have suffered irreversible injuries in the watercraft collision.

Gary Fox, 59, was employed by Georgia-based Ride the Ducks and was the captain aboard one of the company’s tour boats when it became involved in a deadly collision nearly three months ago.

Reports indicated the 33-foot duck boat stalled on the Delaware River before a 250-foot barge slammed into it. All 35 of the tour boat’s passengers, along with Fox and his deckhand, were thrown overboard on impact.

The boat collision killed two Hungarian tourists and left countless others with various injuries. The families of the two fatally injured Hungarian victims have also filed lawsuits in connection with the crash.

The National Transportation Safety Board’s initial probe revealed that Fox’ distress calls to the tugboat went unreturned. The personal injury lawsuit claims, “Although other vessels heard Duck Boat 34’s radio calls, the tugboat did not respond to Capt. Fox’s radio transmissions and did not change its course.”

Additionally, Fox shut down the vessel’s electrical system after noticing smoke. In doing so, however, Fox was unable to sound his air horn. The NTSB’s report also noted that there was no lookout on the tugboat.

Fox reportedly injured his head, neck, back, arms and legs after he and other passengers became temporarily trapped under the wrecked barge. The lawsuit adds, “He can still see the faces of the victims and hear their screams.”

The city of Philadelphia declined to comment on the lawsuit. Furthermore, the mate who was piloting the tugboat when it collided with the duck boat referred to his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination when asked to comment on pending litigation. Nonetheless, the case is underway.

Legal News Reporter: Sandra Quinlan- Legal News for Pennsylvania Personal Injury Lawyers.

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