Gloucester: Teenager Killed In Speedboat Accident

The family of Emily Gardner who died in a speedboat accident over the weekend have paid tribute to their "diamond".

The 14-year-old was on holiday in Brixham in Devon with a friend's family at the time of the crash.

On Saturday morning, she became trapped underneath the speedboat after it overturned with three other people on board. Police say it appears her buoyancy aid got caught on part of the boat.

Lifeboat crews attended the incident and released Emily before taking her to shore, where she was taken to Torybay hospital in a critical condition. She was pronounced dead a short time later and her family were told.

A 50-year-old man and two 15-year-old girls, also from the Gloucester area, who were on board the boat before it capsized, were taken to shore by jet skis before lifeboat crews arrived. They were taken to hospital by ambulance with minor injuries and have since been discharged.

Two men, aged 18 and 50, from the Worcester area, who were travelling on the jet skis and assisted with the rescue before emergency services arrived, were also taken to hospital for checks but were later discharged.

A police spokesperson said: "Enquiries are continuing into the cause of the incident. From the enquiries conducted so far, reports suggest that the boat hit a wave before overturning. The four people on the boat were then thrown overboard as a result.
"It appears that Emily became trapped due to her buoyancy aid getting caught on part of the boat.
"The other people on the boat and the jet ski riders tried to help Emily but could not free her. The RNLI crew freed her from the boat and took her to the shore.
"At this stage in the investigation we are satisfied that there are no suspicious circumstances and we believe that this was nothing more than a tragic accident."

In a statement released by police, her family said: "Our beautiful Emily was a caring loving, gentle daughter and sister. She was full of life and had the world ahead of her. She was our diamond, now shining bright in the sky.

"She will be missed and forever in our hearts."