(5/28/13) Eleven people escaped serious injuries when their houseboat lost power, and was swept over the gates on a Mississippi River lock-and-dam just west of La Crosse.
It happened before 5:30 yesterday afternoon at Lock-and-Dam Number-seven in Dresbach Minnesota. Six people were taken to a hospital. Authorities said their injuries were not serious. The other five did not need medical treatment. John Meyer, the fire chief in La Crescent Minnesota, said the houseboat flung over the roller gates on the lock-and-dam unit and then tipped over. All 11 people on the boat were out of the water when rescuers arrived. Everyone was accounted for. A fishing boat captain, John Rieple, told the La Crosse Tribune he rescued five of the victims when he saw them clinging to a lifeboat nearby. Emergency divers tried salvaging the houseboat. It was spotted near the shore with only its top visible. An investigation continues. Six years ago, a family-of-four was killed at the Dresbach dam when they got swept under the water after their boat lost power.