Tragic Stories From Real People

LyfGard’s Propeller Deflector    protects boaters, fishermen,divers, waterskiers, swimmers and aquatic mammals  from coming into contact with the protruding lower end engine and boat propeller by deflecting them away from this 'Killing Zone.'

"A series of events led to all three of us being thrown in the water.  My husband yelled to warn me the boat was approaching from behind. The propeller slashed my arm, my back, my breast, and continued down to my buttocks and hip, chewing through bone. The next time I saw my husband he was floating dead in the water, his  left leg missing from the knee down.  The man who we hired as a guide had also been struck and killed. For them, the propeller caused death. For me, I am alive and suffering. Through great will, I am a functioning human being; but I’m still trying to adjust to a completely different life.” - Courtesy of the U.S. Coast Guard


During a long 4th of July weekend, six manatees were recovered and confirmed to have died from watercraft collisions throughout Florida. The manatees were recovered in Brevard, Citrus, Duval, Pinellas, and Sarasota counties, with two of the watercraft mortalities occurring in Pinellas County.

Holidays are not the only dangerous times for manatees. On June 29th, a manatee mother and her calf were rescued in Crystal River after the mother suffered a watercraft strike. In addition to these documented cases of injury or death, most living manatees bear scars from non-lethal boat strikes.

Through July 7th, 54 watercraft deaths and 198 total manatee deaths were reported in Florida, which are near-record totals. These statistics emphasize the threats faced by Florida’s manatees and provide an opportunity to remind our state’s residents and visitors to practice responsible boating and fishing practices in order to keep our waters safe for manatees, other wildlife, and ourselves.

“People must remember that manatee mortality statistics reflect the life and death of living creatures,” said Dr. Katie Tripp, Save the Manatee Club’s Director of Science and Conservation. “We should never forget that manatees suffer as a result of human carelessness.  As a caring species ourselves, we should find such suffering unacceptable.”

For further information, contact:
Patrick Rose, Aquatic Biologist
Executive Director, Save the Manatee Club
Phone: (407) 539-0990
Cell: (850) 570-1373

Katie Tripp, Ph. D.
Director of Science & Conservation