March 29, 2011 in Nation/World

Father, son die in boat accident

Elliot Spagat Associated Press

SAN DIEGO – A father and son died when a sailboat carrying 10 people on an excursion organized by a group that helps disabled people capsized in calm water in San Diego Bay, authorities said Monday.

Chao Chen, 73, and his son, Jun Chen, 48, of San Diego, died Sunday night, San Diego Harbor police Chief John Bolduc said.

Another person, who was not identified, was in serious condition.

Among those thrown into the water were two young adults with undisclosed special needs, and a 10-year-old girl and an 11-year-old boy who were wearing life jackets, authorities said.

Some people on the boat were not wearing life jackets, Balduc said, but authorities had not yet determined how many.

The cause of the mishap remained under investigation, but it appeared no other boats were involved.

The people on the 26-foot boat included seven members of one family and two members of another, along with the driver of the craft.

The accident occurred near a buoy marking the way from a protected inlet to the channel of the bay. Harbor Police and civilian craft arrived within five minutes.

The water temperature at the time was in the high 50s, low enough for hypothermia to begin setting in before help arrived.

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