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Long IslandNassau

Two injured when boat flips in Sound off Oyster Bay

A boat carrying five people capsized in the Long Island Sound off Oyster Bay Thursday, injuring two passengers, neither seriously, officials said.

The boaters were trying to anchor a 25-foot Wellcraft fishing boat at Buoy 32A, about 3 1/2 miles off Oyster Bay, U.S. Coast Guard Lt. William Houde said.

But the boat was overloaded on one side, causing it to capsize and spill the passengers into the Sound, he said.

The captain of a nearby boat spotted them and radioed the Coast Guard at 11:27 a.m., Houde said. The captain was able to pull in two of the passengers with a line, but the line got caught in the boat's propellers and disabled it, Houde said.

The other three passengers were pulled out of the water by John Kinta and Arthur Cook, who were also fishing when they spotted the back of the capsized boat, Kinta said. One of the passengers was holding up a second person, who was struggling to swim, he said.

"We moved the boat over to them, and hauled them up out of the water," said Kinta, a New York City firefighter who lives in Locust Valley. "If myself and this other boat weren't there, these guys were sure to drown." Kinta's boat took the three men to Oyster Bay Harbor, he said.

None of the passengers were wearing life jackets, Houde said.

"That's something that we try to stress all the time," he said. "Life jackets are a huge help."

Rough seas may have been to blame, Nassau police said. The National Weather Service issued a small-craft advisory for the Sound Thursday, warning of northwest winds of 15 to 20 knots with gusts of 25 to 30 knots.

One person was reported to have suffered a head laceration, and another person reportedly had hypothermia, police said. They were taken to Syosset Hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, police said.

With Matthew Chayes

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