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Community rallying to help family of teens in ICU after boat explosion

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    HALL COUNTY, Georgia (Gwinnett Daily Post) — A GoFundMe fundraising campaign has been launched to help cover the medical expenses for two teenagers who were severely burned when their family’s boat exploded at Margaritaville at Lanier Islands on Sunday.

A woman and two teenagers were taken to Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta after they were injured by the explosion, which also caused a dock fire at the lakeside attraction.

Hall County Fire Services Division Chief Zachary Brackett said a boat exploded at about 2:30 p.m. at the gas docks located at Margaritaville’s Port of Indecision on Lake Lanier. Several people were injured by the incident.

“Arriving units found a boat fully involved, an associated dock fire due to a jet ski that drifted away from the fire area and six patients to evaluate,” Brackett said.

The people who were taken to Grady included a 39-year-old woman as well as well as a 16-year-old girl and a 13-year-old boy. The adult female was transported by Hall County Fire Services to Grady, but the two teens were airlifted to the hospital.

The other three people who were injured in the incident declined to be transported to the hospital by ambulance, according to Brackett.

Brackett said the Hall County Fire Marshal’s Office is investigating the fire to determine the cause. The fire has been put out, he said.

The GoFundMe campaign to help the family was established on Monday at Campaign organizer David Dirkse said a family consisting of the mother, father, two sons and the daughter were on the boat the exploded.

The mother, father and youngest son had minor injuries.

“Just after fueling up the boat for a family day on the lake their boat exploded injuring the entire family and resulting in Life Flighting the two oldest children to Grady’s Trauma Center,” Dirkse said on the campaign page.

The campaign organizer also said the teens are in the ICU at Grady, but he added their injuries are not life threatening. He said they “have a long road ahead,” however.

“The oldest daughter suffered the worst of the injuries and will remain sedated a minimum of a week to get her through the worst of the pain,” Dirkse said. “She has been in surgery most of today with skin grafts and scraping the burned tissue. So many people have reached out to help that we decided to set this page up for them. The road to recovery is going to be long for this family and we know this will help them.”

The campaign’s goal is to raise $125,000 for family. It had raised $8,560 as of Monday night.

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