Boaters rescued on Falls Lake

DURHAM No one was hurt in the incident, though some of the victims thought it could end much differently.

Tabitha Simmons says she and her friends and family narrowly escaped when the airboat she was in turned over. She, her mom, and her step-brother swam to shore. Two others had to be rescued.

"The airboat started up on fire." Simmons said. "We had to stop and try to pull it out. The water was coming up over the boat. We just sat there and we sunk."

In a separate airboat, a father and son made it safely to shore - but they say high winds made it too difficult for them to rescue the others.

"High winds, very high winds had been pushing 50-60 miles per hour." said Robert Gillum. "At least that much. It turned the boat, and it just flipped it right over."

Rescuers say no one was wearing a life jacket. They say what happened was a close call.

"They were holding onto the boat." said Chief Randy Clements of the Redwood Volunteer Fire Department. "We got here, we had three personnel from Redwood going into the water, tied off with a rope, and we brought them back in with a rope.

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