7-Year-Old Crashes Boat, Kills Mother: Police

Fourth of July Fatal Boating Accident

By Nancy Norman
|  Tuesday, Jul 6, 2010  |  Updated 2:16 PM EDT
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7-Year-Old Crashes Boat, Kills Mother: Police

Mary Schwind/ NBC Philadelphia

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A tragic boating accident on the Fourth of July left a 35-year-old woman dead, and Virginia Marine Police say her 7-year-old boy was piloting the boat when it crashed.

Police spokesman John Bull told DailyPress.com that five people were on board a motorboat on the Hampton River when someone gave up controls of the boat to the child. The boat turned sharply and went underneath a pier.  The woman in the front of the boat was thrown into the windshield and then to the back of the boat. The woman, identified as Elizabeth J. Elliott of Hampton, died at Riverside Regional Hospital of severe head trauma.

“It’s a terrible tragedy,” Bull told the paper.  “People need to be safe on the water, they need to be cautious and they need to be safe."

Marine police are looking into the accident, but say Virginia has no age restrictions regarding the operation of a motorboat, but everyone must pass a boating safety education course.

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