30 people had to be rescued from a Duck Tour boat in the river Thames on Sunday after the “amphibious bus” caught fire right outside the Houses of Parliament in London. Many of the 28 passengers had to jump into the water to escape the flames.
A spokesperson for the London police said all passengers and crew were accounted for, and though seven people were being treating for smoke inhalation, only one passenger was taken to the hospital with minor injuries.
“Our Ducks have been modified to meet stringent safety regulations set by road and river authorities. Each vehicle seats 30 passengers, has a public address system and is fitted with full and comprehensive safety equipment."
Due to the incident today we will be running a ‘land only service’ from Monday 30th September.
This is not the first duck boat accident in recent years. Just weeks ago in Boston, tourists had to evacuate a smoky boat. Five people were injured in a Boston duck boat accident in 2010 just a week after two passengers were killed in a duck boat accident in Philadelphia. This doesn’t even count the bride in a Zipcar who crashed with the duck boat in Boston on her way to a wedding reception. And The Yellow Duckmarine in Liverpool has had two boats sink this year.
While pointing out the danger of the boats, it’s also important to point out that very few people have ever seen a duck boat go by without feeling absolute embarrassment for everyone on board. And they're fucking loud. Maybe it’s just time we all say goodbye to these environmentally destructive beasts? Is there any reason they should stay?