UPDATE: Teens still critical after parasailing crash

Published: Tuesday, July 2, 2013 at 12:53 PM.

Florida’s Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is investigating the incident. In a news release the agency said a strong storm initiated problems that led to the crash.

“These winds kept the chute aloft and several attempts to winch the riders back onto the vessel failed,” the news release states. “The anchor was set to keep the boat from being pulled onto shore. The towline detached and the riders were helpless to control the chute.”

The captain of the boat, the “Why Knot,” was 30-year-old Tyler Churchwell for Aquatic Adventures. He declined to comment for this story.

Several witnesses said the victims were in a tandem harness under a parachute that detached from a boat.

Cole Adair and Michael Kennedy, on vacation from Georgia, were bleeding after they jumped a fence to get to the victims, who smashed into a condominium and then were carried into a power line near Thomas Drive around 4 p.m. before crashing into several vehicles in the parking lot, where they came to rest.

The impact caved in the roof and front windshield of an SUV in the parking lot.

“It was gruesome,” Kennedy said.

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