Boating accident injures two Motorboat hits barge pushed by tug on Chesapeake near Fort Howard.


A man and woman from Harundale, Anne Arundel County, were injured early today -- one of them seriously -- when their outboard motorboat struck a barge being pushed by a tugboat in Chesapeake Bay off Fort Howard in Baltimore County, the U.S. Coast Guard said.

The victims were taken aboard a Baltimore County Police boat, which transported them to shore, a Coast Guard spokesman said.

From there, they were taken by ambulance to the Francis Scott Key Medical Center for treatment.

They were identified by Coast Guard officials today as Michael James Swader, 22, of the 100 block of Martha Road, and Kelly Lyn Main, 21, of the 300 block of Taylor Ave. Main was admitted and listed in serious condition today at Key. Swader was treated for minor abrasions and released.

No one on the tug was injured.

A Coast Guard spokesman said the tug Elizabeth and the couple's 20-foot Sunbird runabout collided near the Craig Hill lighthouse about three miles southwest of Hart-Miller Island. The tug reported the accident at 12:49 a.m.

Swader said today he was headed north when he spotted the lights of the tug headed south. The tug was pushing a barge, but the barge "had no running lights at all," he said.

Trying to avoid the tug, he said, "we swerved from the boat and hit the barge broadside." Swader and Main were thrown down, but remained on board their boat until the Coast Guard arrived. The damaged runabout stayed afloat.

The Coast Guard said the tugboat was believed to be one of several used to haul spoil from a Baltimore harbor-dredging site to Hart-Miller Island for deposit there.

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