TAMPA, Fla. — The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is asking the public for help finding a boat involved in a hit-and-run crash that left one man injured in Homosassa on July 6.
FWC officials say the injured man was diving for scallops when he was struck by a vessels propeller at the scallop grounds northwest of St. Martins River in the Crystal River area. Officials say the vessel fled the scene after the incident. They say the victim was transported to a nearby hospital for treatment.
According to witnesses, the boat is believed to be a white, blue or beige Robalo or Sea Fox with a top.
Alan Sawaya – who has run “Scallop Adventures” for eight years — takes clients out to scallop grounds and does offshore fishing, and said he makes keeping them safe is a top priority. He says that there are a lot of inexperienced boaters out of the water that either don’t know the rules of the waterways, or ignore them.
Sawaya said he has even experienced boaters driving fast towards the areas where his divers were in the water.
“I’ll blow the horn, I’ll blow the whistle, I’ll wave my arms and get my scallopers back to the boat,” he said.
Sawaya does set up a divers flag and keeps a close eye over his divers and other boaters in the area. He said he hopes the boater who left the scene on July 6 is brought to justice.