A salmon fisherman who abandoned ship by leaping into the Columbia river last summer, right before another boat crashed into his, is suing the other boat driver for $372,000.
The Oregonian reports that the Clatsop County sheriff's office accused Marlin Lee Larson of several crimes after the boater told investigators he couldn't see where he was driving because the dash of his boat was blocking his view when he was sitting down. The sheriff's investigation report notes that the 75-year-old Larsen uses a motorized scooter to get around on land.
According to the report, Larsen's son-in-law was also on the boat at the time and said he warned Larsen to pay attention, and that his father-in-law sometimes uses his cellphone while driving the boat.
The lawsuit, filed by 47-year-old Bryan Maess, claims Larsen was boating while distracted by his cell phone on the morning of August 12, 2017. His friends, Christopher McMahon and Roni Durham were also onboard at the time. The crash was captured on video by a GoPro camera mounted on the boat. All three jumped overboard to avoid being hurt. The sheriff's office says the three would have likely been killed if they hadn't abandoned ship.
The suit says Maess suffered vision problems, headaches and injuries to his ankle, leg and arm from jumping into the water and being struck by debris.