Feds: Coast Guard boat speed caused fatal crash

By ELLIOT SPAGAT | July 12, 2011 | 12:44 PM EDT

SAN DIEGO (AP) — Federal investigators say dangerous speeds are to blame for a Coast Guard vessel striking a pleasure boat at a holiday parade on San Diego Bay and killing an 8-year-old boy and seriously injuring four others.

The National Transportation Safety Board on Tuesday faulted the Coast Guard vessel's excessive speed along with a lack of oversight for the December 2009 collision.

Investigators say the 33-foot Coast Guard vessel was going as fast as 42 knots — or 48 mph — when it struck the boat shortly after a fireworks show in a bay packed with kayaks, canoes and other watercraft.

The Coast Guard crew was responding to a grounded sailboat that was in no danger of taking on water.