Motor failure on houseboat tosses 11 into river

DRESBACH, Minn. (AP) — Winona County sheriff’s officials say a houseboat that went through a lock and dam roller gate in Dresbach and tossed eleven people into the Mississippi River had electrical and mechanical problems that caused its motor to fail.

Chief Deputy Ron Ganrude says seven passengers were taken to a La Crosse hospital to be checked out Monday. The others were not injured.

Ganrude tells KAGE (http://bit.ly/12fK1lS ) the captain and another employee of Mississippi River Rental were showing the group of nine how to operate the boat when the motor quit. The group had intended to rent the boat for a week. At least some of them are from Grafton, Wis.

A family of four drowned in 2007 when their boat lost power in the same area.

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Information from: KAGE-AM, http://www.winonaradio.com

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