Court showed how the speedboat crashed, fatally injuring a 15-year-old girl

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A shocking video has shown the moments a 15-year-old girl was thrown into the water after a boat crashed into a buoy in Southampton.

Emily Lewis suffered fatal injuries after the RIB she was in, also known as the Rib, collided with the 4.5 meter high structure.

Footage of the incident was shown in court today, amid the trial of speedboat skipper Michael Lawrence.

The 55-year-old is accused of negligent homicide.

Michael Howley, 52, the owner of Seadogz, the company that operated the boat trip, is accused of not operating the boat safely.

A number of other passengers were seriously injured in the accident which occurred in Southhampton at 10:11am on Saturday 22 August 2020.

The boat was traveling at 36.8 knots – 42 miles per hour – at the time of the collision, according to Winchester Crown Court.

In a video clip shown to the jury, the Seadogz rib can be seen heading straight for the buoy before hitting it.

Undated handout photo issued by Hampshire Police of Emily Lewis. Two men have been charged in connection with the death of the 15-year-old girl who died in a high-speed accident on a tour boat. Emily was among 12 people hospitalized after the Rigid Inflatable Boat (Rib) collided with a buoy in the Solent on August 22, 2020. Issue date: Thursday January 13, 2022. PA Photo. Michael Lawrence, 54, who drove the boat, was charged with grossly negligent manslaughter and Michael Howley, 51, the owner of the company that operated the boat trip, was charged with failing to take all reasonable steps to make the boat safe was operated. See PA story POLICE Emily. Photo credit should read: Hampshire Police/PA Wire NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may be used for editorial reporting purposes only to simultaneously illustrate events, things or people in the photo or facts mentioned in the photo caption. Reuse of the image may require further permission from the copyright owner.

Emily Lewis suffered fatal injuries after the RIB she was on collided with a 15-foot buoy (Image: PA)

The woman who filmed the incident, who was on a passing ferry, can be heard saying, “Oh my god someone ran over, I think someone ran over, yeah people drove off, there’s people in the water who are.” gone right across the front. My God.’

At today’s hearing, paramedic posed as Megan Hunt, who was visiting Southampton’s Ocean Village with emergency services.

After the passengers were brought ashore, she said Lawrence told her his face mask blew up before the crash and blocked his view.

She said he was “clearly in shock with his head in his hands.”

BEST QUALITY AVAILABLE Screengrab of footage dated 08/22/20 issued by Hampshire Police, which was shown to the jury at Winchester Crown Court in the trial of a speedboat skipper Michael Lawrence, 55, who was charged with manslaughter at the moment when his boat crashed into a buoy, killing a 15-year-old Emily Lewis. Issue date: Tuesday January 17, 2023. PA Photo. Emily Lewis suffered fatal injuries after the Rigid Inflatable Boat (Rib) collided with a 4.5m high buoy at 36.8 knots in Southampton Water at 10:11am on 22 August 2020, seriously injuring a number of other passengers. See PA story COURTS Emily. Photo credit should read: Hampshire Police/PA Wire NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may be used for editorial reporting purposes only to simultaneously illustrate events, things or people in the photo or facts mentioned in the photo caption. Reuse of the image may require further permission from the copyright owner.

Footage of the incident was shown to the jury at Winchester Crown Court today (Image: PA)

She said: “Mr Lawrence told me he was driving the boat and the wind was blowing in his face and he was blowing up his visor and face mask and obstructing his vision, I think he was covering his eyes.

“When he got it in place, the buoy was too close to them and he didn’t have time to turn the boat around.”

She added that Lawrence was wearing a face mask because he was doing the shopping for his parents, who were shielding at the time.

Lawrence suffered a knee injury in the collision.

Michael Howley, 51, the owner of boat tour company Seadogz, leaves Southampton Magistrates' Court, Hampshire, where he was tried alongside boater Michael Lawrence, 54, in connection with the death of a 15-year-old girl who was involved in a high-speed accident in a excursion boat was killed. Picture date: Wednesday February 2, 2022. PA Photo. Emily Lewis was among 12 people hospitalized after the Rigid Inflatable Boat (Rib) collided with a buoy in the Solent on August 22, 2020. See PA Story COURTS Emily. Photo credit should read: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

Michael Howley, 51, the owner of boat excursion company Seadogz (Image: PA)

Duncan Christie, a naval officer with Associated British Ports, said he was driving a launch on the day of the crash and became aware of the accident.

He said when he got to the rib he found Lawrence, who he had known since 1996 when they worked together on lifeboats, “very distraught and in a panic.”

Mr Christie said: “He said the Covid mask went up over his face, the wind blew it up and covered his eyes.”

He said Lawrence told him “several times” that this happened before the crash.

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Mr. Christie, who had also worked for Seadogz, described Lawrence as a “competent seaman”.

When asked by Lawrence’s attorney, Karim Khalil KC, whether Lawrence was a “safe pair of hands” who could be “totally relied on” and popular within the RNLI community, Mr Christie agreed, saying he was “safe “.

He also agreed with Mr Khalil’s suggestion that Lawrence was “absolutely not the kind of seaman who wants to take risks” or “who aims at a fixed object on purpose”.

The court was presented with an article in the winter of 2010 Lifeboat magazine entitled “Master and Commander,” which detailed a search and rescue mission led by Lawrence for a missing ferry passenger.

Mr Christie’s colleague Jamie McLeod said while attending the accident he saw Ms Lewis aboard a rib as she was being brought ashore.

He said: “She was confused and not well. As I knelt down next to her, I could see immediately that she was very ill, she was very pale, she was breathing.’

Lawrence of Blackfield, New Forest; and Howley of Hordle, New Forest; deny the allegations and the process continues.

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https://metro.co.uk/2023/01/17/court-shown-moment-speedboat-crashed-fatally-injuring-girl-15-18115944/ Court showed how the speedboat crashed, fatally injuring a 15-year-old girl

Justin Scacco

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