The decision by the Ride the Ducks company to cancel its amphibious tourist attraction in Philadelphia indefinitely has an attorney renewing his call for banning it completely.
Attorney Robert Mongeluzzi, who represented families of those killed in duck boat accidents, said he believe the vehicles that operate on city streets and in the Delaware River should never return to Philadelphia.
“Duck boats are dangerous. They kill people on the land, they kill people on the water,” he said. “They should have been banned long ago.”
City Councilman William Greenlee disagreed, saying if the tours are run properly they are good for Philadelphia.
“I think you have to make it safe, but to just say they shouldn’t exist at all, just off the top of my head, that goes a little far,” he said.
Councilman Curtis Jones agreed.
“Tourists look forward to seeing Philadelphia from an aquatic view and looking at our riverway is a part of that,” Jones said.
In May 2015, a duck boat struck and killed a 68-year-old Texas woman who was crossing the street.
And in July 2010, a tugboat-guided barge struck a duck boat on the Delaware River, killing two Hungarian tourists. The tug pilot, who was talking on his cellphone at the time, was sentenced to a year in prison. The duck boats did not operate for eight months afterward.
Ride the Ducks released a statement Thursday blaming a 330 percent increase in its insurance bill for forcing it to stop the tours.