By now, you've probably read about the duck boat tragedy in Branson, Missouri. Whenever I hear about events like this, I analyze the situation to think about what might have altered the outcome for the better. After a tragedy, there is always at least one survival lesson we can learn that may help us if we are ever caught up in a similar incident.
In this case, it's that you should always trust your own judgment in an emergency instead of the soothing words of people whose jobs depend on you not freaking out.
If you haven't heard about the incident, here's what happened. In Branson, a tourist mecca in the Ozarks, there is an outing you can go on called "Ride the Ducks." The Ducks are amphibious vehicles that can be driven on dry land right into the water where they function as a boat. I've personally been on them more than once with my own family.
When you "Ride the Ducks," they take you on a pleasant tour of the area with spectacular views and a pleasant boat ride on a large lake. For added fun, you get a "quacker," which is a lanyard holding something that looks like a duck bill. You blow into it when you see another amphibious vehicle and it sounds like the boats are quacking at each other. My daughters still have their quackers (much to my parental dismay.)
Here's what happened
Anyway, a few days ago, a sudden storm blew up and the 60 mph winds stirred up the lake. After a struggle, the duck boat capsized, and 17 of the 31 people on board perished in the waters of Table Rock Lake. Tragically, nine of the drowning victims were from a single family.
Seventeen people were killed when a duck boat packed with tourists capsized and sank in high winds on a Missouri lake overnight, Stone County Sheriff Doug Rader announced on social media Friday. The driver of the Ride the Ducks boat died but the captain survived when the boat sank Thursday night in Table Rock Lake in the Branson area, Rader said earlier at a press conference.