Five injured in Diversion Canal boat crash

LSU cheer coach operating boat, injured in accident, LDWF says.

Four Baton Rougeans, including a coach of the LSU cheer coach, were injured Saturday (Aug. 27) when the boat in which they were riding apparently slammed into a pier on the Diversion Canal, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries reported.

LSU cheer coach Jack Riffle, 41, was reportedly operating the boat when the accident occurred, the LDWF said.

Also injured were Riffle’s 44-year-old wife Elizabeth, a 15-year-old daughter, a 13-year-old son and 29-year-old Chico Garcia, the agency said. The juveniles were not identified by name.

All involved are from Baton Rouge and found to have injuries ranging from moderate to very serious, according to an LDWF news release.

LDWF enforcement agents responded to the boating crash incident around 7 p.m., after being told of the accident by occupants in another boat.

Upon arrival agents found that the 19-foot vessel had struck and was lodged under a pier, the LDWF said.

Agents immediately summoned emergency medical responders and began removing debris to access and provide basic first-aid to those injured until the advanced medical responders were able to arrive.

The cause of the accident is currently under investigation by LDWF.

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