Two men dead, 3 survive after boat capsizes in Jamaica Bay

By Sadef Ali Kully

Two people are dead and three people remain hospitalized after a small boat capsized in Jamaica Bay Friday night during heavy wind and rain from Hurricane Joaquin, the police said.

Ricardo Mejia, 42, and Joel Ortiz, 50, both from Brooklyn were pronounced dead at Mount Sinai Brooklyn Hospital, police said.

Police did not release the names of the survivors but did confirm that the three people were from Brooklyn were in stable condition at Coney Island Hospital.

Police officials said they alerted around 8 p.m. to a capsized boat in Jamaica Bay, near Floyd Bennett Field at the border of Brooklyn and Queens.

According to police, five people were on board the boat when it capsized. Two of the survivors were able to swim ashore while one man clung to the overturned boat until he was rescued by the NYPD harbor boat.

Most of Jamaica Bay stretches along the southern parts of Queens, surrounded by JFK airport, Broad Channel and the Rockaways. The bay spills out towards Brooklyn into the Lower Bay.

A coastal flood advisory was still in effect for the city and Long Island, according to the National Weather Service due to Hurricane Joaquin near the Bahamas which contributed to heavy rains and fierce wind.

Reach Reporter Sadef Ali Kully by e-mail at skully@cnglocal.com or by phone at (718) 260–4546.

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