Report blames Playpen boat accident that severed girl’s ft on ‘improper lookout;’ captain says it was all horrible


CHICAGO (CBS) — A boating tragedy on Lake Michigan’s in style Playpen space despatched two girls to the hospital just lately – and one among them needed to have her ft amputated.

We obtained an accident report that not solely reveals what went mistaken, but in addition who was on the controls of the boat on the time. For the primary time Thursday, CBS 2’s Sabrina Franza bought in contact with the captain of the boat concerned that day.

We realized extra about his function within the tragedy – and extra of what actually occurred earlier than a girl’s ft had been severed by a ship propeller on Saturday, Aug. 13.

Our seek for the captain began with a Freedom of Information Act request – which reveals his identify, and landed us at his workplace. His identify is Joseph I. Neverauskas, and he’s the senior vice chairman of a big actual property funding agency – Equus Capital Partners.

Neverauskas can also be a licensed boat captain.

He was at his workplace when the workers let our crew inside.

Neverauskas informed us that the U.S. Coast Guard, who had been on the scene that day, requested him not to talk about the investigation – and he requested us to not interview him on digital camera.

But when he talked with Franza about that day, he stated it was horrible.

Neverauskas confirmed what we already knew – he captained the boat that backed into two girls swimming contained in the densely-crowded boating space in Lake Michigan referred to as the Playpen.

He had a license, however didn’t personal the boat he was skippering – data we realized from an eight-page, detailed inside investigation by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

IDNR Playpen Accident Report by
Adam Harrington on

We had our knowledgeable additional analyze the data.

“What struck me was a point that would need further investigation is the nature of the crowdedness of this Playpen area in the lake,” stated Kyle McAvoy, a marine security knowledgeable and retired U.S. Coast Guard captain. “Someone wasn’t paying close enough attention to their surroundings – and they should be.”

The boating accident report stated it occurred on a transparent day with good visibility, calm waves, and lightweight wind – and an operator with over 100 hours of expertise. There was additionally no affect of alcohol.

So what went mistaken? One knowledgeable stated it is too quickly to inform. But the report offers some clues.

It cites “improper lookout” – which means, watching out for boats or individuals – within the packed Playpen.

“You have the job functions of being a lookout to ensure that you’re minimizing any risk of collision with other vessels,” McAvoy stated.

CBS 2’s Steven Graves spoke final week to the lady who misplaced her ft, Lana Batochir. She shared the painful recollections whereas she recovers from surgical procedure to amputate her legs, 10 inches beneath her knees.

“I felt something, and I just let my body go, and I thought my legs, my intestines, and my body’s next. So I thought, ‘this is how I die,’ and I had given up,” Batochir stated final week.

 A GoFundMe page has raised more than $123,000 for her medical bills as of Thursday night.

Meanwhile, Coast Guard stated they’re conducting a couple of separate investigations themselves – which they hope will probably be completed within the subsequent month. One is trying into doable federal prices, whereas the opposite is trying into presumably revoking the captain’s license.

At the state degree, there aren’t any prices. All the investigations are ongoing.


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