Queenstown’s Shotover Jet back in business

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An iconic Queenstown jet boating company is back in business after a boat carrying 14 passengers crashed yesterday. 

Maritime New Zealand is conducting an investigation into what caused the Shotover Jet boat to hit a rock face about 250m upstream from Tucker Beach on the Shotover River at 3pm. 

Four of the five injured passengers were released from hospital last night, but one Queenstown passenger with a swollen hip will remain in Frankton’s Lakes District Hospital again tonight for observation.

David Kennedy, regional boss for Shotover Jet’s owner Ngai Tahu Tourism, says the “experienced” boat driver has been stood down in the short term while they “look after him and identify what needs to happen from there”. 

The driver’s “obviously a bit shaken up by it all”, Kennedy says. 

A Maritime New Zealand spokesperson wouldn’t speculate on what caused the accident or how long the investigation would take. 

“We just need to conduct a thorough investigation and we’ll release those results once they’re known.” 

In its last financial year ended June 30, Shotover Jet carried a record 145,337 thrill-seekers. 

The Ngai Tahu Tourism company’s last serious accident was in 1999, when a Japanese passenger was killed.