The Iowa Department of Natural Resources announced on Sunday that officials pulled the bodies of four missing boaters from the Mississippi river. According to DNR officer Paul Kay those bodies were pulled within 100 yards of the crash site.
According to Kay the victims include three men and a woman, all believed to be in their 20s.
Officials have not revealed the names of the victims as they attempt to contact their family members before information is made public.
The boaters were killed when a flat-bottom boat made of aluminum ran into another aluminum flat-bottom boat in the O’Connell Slough area of the river where water is typically 10 to 12 feet deep. The accident occurred just before 2 a.m. on Saturday.
One boat was carrying a single passenger while the other boat was carrying 11 people. The eight people who survived the accident were injured during the collision.
Searchers had looked for survivors and victims all day Saturday but eventually called off the search as nighttime approached, eventually beginning the search again on early Sunday morning.
One of the boaters who survived was pulled from the river with serious injuries and was flown to an Iowa City hospital while the rest of the boaters were treated and released from a Burlington hospital location.
The accident occurred just southeast of Iowa on the Illinois border and about 200 miles north of St. Louis.
According to DNR spokesman Kevin Baskins the cause of the crash is not yet known and no charges have been filed against anyone involved in the deadly accident.