Joke for school children goes horribly wrong

A charter-boat crew member has choked to death after swallowing fish bait as a joke in front of primary-school children during a field trip off California, USA.

Jeff Twaddle, 54, of Huntington Beach, California, was trying to amuse the children when he put a dead fish in his mouth, said Long Beach Fire Chief Frank Hayes. ‘But it became an airway obstruction, and he lost consciousness and went into full cardiac arrest.’

Crew members on board the vessel, Gail Force, tried to dislodge the bait and administer CPR but were unsuccessful, authorities said. The boat had been chartered by the Los Angeles Unified School District to take 20 students on a fishing trip.

Twaddle was transported to hospital, where he was pronounced dead. Los Angeles County Coroner Lt. Fred Corral said that the cause of death was listed as ‘aspiration of fish.’

Crisis counselling was offered to students who witnessed the incident.