Water scooter accident near John's Pass injures Pennsylvania teenager

ST. PETE BEACH — A teenage boy was hospitalized Thursday afternoon in a water scooter accident just west of John's Pass, officials said.

The teen, who was not immediately identified, was taken to Bayfront Medical Center around noon with a large cut to his head, according to Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission reports.

He was unable to answer basic questions after suffering his injury, said commission spokesman Robert Scholl.

The teen, vacationing with his family from Pennsylvania, was riding on a rented WaveRunner from Woody's Watersports, a Madeira Beach-based company that rents boats and personal watercraft.

Water scooter accidents are common and often serious, Scholl said.

"They are the motorcycle of the ocean," he said, noting safety procedures will be taught during the commission's Boating Safety Week, which kicks off Saturday.

"When you have an inexperienced driver, it's important to follow safety protocols," Scholl said. "Wear your life jackets, wear your lanyards, be careful on the water."

Officials with Woody's Watersports declined to comment.

Marissa Lang can be reached at mlang@tampabay.com or (727) 893-8804.

Water scooter accident near John's Pass injures Pennsylvania teenager 05/17/12 [Last modified: Thursday, May 17, 2012 4:39pm]

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