Authorities investigating Croatian tragedy

Two sailors have been killed when a motorboat mounted their cockpit in Croatia.

The 63-year-old Croatian motorboat skipper, Tomo Horvatinčić, claimed that his 12m (39ft) boat’s steering system had broken.

Witnesses have suggested that he was travelling at up to 20mph, when he crashed into the 13m (42ft) yacht, Santa Pazienza, and its two Italian crew, 63-year-old Francesco Salpietro and his wife Marinelda Patella, 61, an engineer and dietician both from Padova.

The force of the impact dismasted the yacht, destroying its port side and left the two bodies floating in the water.

Both Mr Horvatinčić and his crew, 35-year-old Anica Đerđa, were unharmed in the incident, which occurred on the southern tip of the island Maslinovik.

Both boats are now in the hands of the Croatian authorities, who are investigating the collision, and it has been reported that Mr Horvatinčić could face up to two year’s imprisonment.

He said: ‘Seeing that the control system was not working, I tried to force people to point out that my boat was out of control, but we were unable to prevent danger arising.

‘Unfortunately, my attempts did not help in preventing this tragic crash.

‘I am very shocked about this tragic event.’

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Photo courtesy of Paun Paunovic/CROPIX.

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