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Boat fire victim released from Tampa General

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Boat explosion at Indian Mound Park boat ramp Jan. 8, 2022

The Englewood Area Fire Control District marine unit fights the fire on a boat that exploded at the Indian Mound Park boat ramp Saturday.

ENGLEWOOD — The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and state fire marshals are still investigating what led to an outboard to explode at Indian Mound Park on Saturday.

An adult and a child were injured.

Wildlife officers identified the adult as Michael Risley, 44, of Englewood.

The victims were first transported to Sarasota Memorial Hospital.

According to reports, the child suffered minor injuries while Risley, described as sustaining third-degree burns, was transported to Tampa General Hospital.

He was released from Tampa General on Sunday.

Wildlife officers reported Risley was the operator of the 24-foot boat and was preparing to leave the dock when shortly after starting the engine, there was an explosion.

Six other passengers were uninjured.

The Englewood Area Fire Control District received a call about noon Saturday that a boat exploded 300 feet offshore from the boat ramp at Indian Mound, about two blocks south of West Dearborn Street in Englewood.

When the Englewood fire boat and an engine arrived, the fire fully engaged the boat, which was grounded on an oyster bar offshore. Charlotte County Sheriff’s marine unit and Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission officers also responded to the scene.

Bystanders helped the survivors of the blaze to shore before emergency personnel arrived on scene

“This is still an active investigation,” FWC spokeswoman Melody Kilborn said. “Accident investigations can take several weeks to a few months to complete, depending on many factors.”

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