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06/23/09 06:56 AM

Local divers rescue 2 after Onondaga Lake crash

SYRACUSE—A group of rescue divers based in the City of Tonawanda pulled two hydroplane boat racers to safety after a high-speed crash during a race Saturday afternoon on Onondaga Lake.

The collision occurred when Jimmy Shane, of Maryland, hit a stalled boat piloted by Pierre Maheu, of Quebec, at more than 120 mph, according to a statement from the American Power Boat Association. Shane’s boat flew about 20 feet into the air and landed upside down about 250 feet down the lake, witnesses said.

Kevin O’Connor, president of the association’s Region 2 Rescue Team, and diver Ken Haynos pulled the unconscious Shane out from under his boat. Divers Jim Borzillieri, Mark Mc- Donald and Todd Marlin assisted Maheu, who had to be pried from his boat after it was towed to shore. Both men were taken to University Hospital in Syracuse, where they were listed in good condition.

The Region 2 Rescue Team, formed by 14 former members of the City of Tonawanda Police Underwater Squad, provides rescue services at boat races throughout the region.