Correction to this story from yesterday, about 41-year-old John Caughlin who was badly hurt after being hit by a boat during the Maui Channel swim on Saturday. He had a lot more than just a hand ‘nearly severed’, read The Daily News of Open Water Swimming:
John was taken by Jet ski to shore and underwent surgery for eight hours at Maui Memorial Hospital. According to the latest reports from the hospital, the attending physician said John’s right arm just above the elbow had to be amputated due to severe vascular damage and his left hand was reattached, but his thumb and index finger are gone.
There is an interesting article here on the same blog with recommendations about what to do when and if you happen to get too close to swimmers with your boat. Always good to know, even though I still think that boats at open water swims ought to have that prop guard solution:
When a boater is caught in a pack with swimmers all around (left, right, front, rear), do not panic. Take the boat out of gear, turn the motor off, wait until the swimmers are safely clear, and then resume operations. Because the prop may still turn with the boat our of gear and the motor off, consider putting the boat back in gear (with the motor off) to stop the prop.