American Killed, Nine Injured in Bahamas Boat Explosion

Leroy Wright
July 5, 2018

A tropical vacation turned tragedy for an American family when their tour boat in the Bahamas exploded, killing one woman and injuring several others.

When Grimes heard about an explosion on a tour boat off the coast of Exuma on Saturday, he prayed it wasn't the vessel his daughter was on, he said.

Footage taken by a witness on a nearby boat moments after the blast shows flames and thick black smoke billowing from the burning boat.

Her husband Tyrane Jackson, who suffered burns, was among the four Americans transported by the U.S. Coast Guard to a Florida hospital.

According to a close family friend, Jackson had to have a limb amputated because of the explosion.

Maleka Grimes, 39, from Tennessee, died in the explosion.

A GoFundMe campaign to assist with the Schaffer's medical and travel expenses has raised more than $80,000 as of Monday evening. Paul and Brooke suffered a few bruises and cuts, but Stephanie and Stacey sustained severe injuries. "That's what I want to do", he said.

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Stefanie Schaffer, 22, is in a medically induced coma, and is thought to be unaware both her legs have been amputated, her uncle told USA media.

The Rutland Herald reports she also suffered two broken arms, a fractured spine and internal injuries. "We are saddened and our hearts are hurting, but we will get through this together".

Now, Schaffer and her mother are fighting for their lives, her brother George Schaffer told ABC.

John Iman, who was on the boat with Sheila Jones and her son, Haiden Jones, who is dating Stefanie Schaffer's sister Brooke, told ABC News that the explosion happened about three minutes into the trip.

Ms Schaffer is due to graduate from Coastal Carolina University in December.

Investigators are still determining what caused the explosion.

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