Mechanical Failure, Not Racing, Led to Boat Crash: Expert

Both vessels were capable of speeds of about 100 mph

A racing boat enthusiast says mechanical failure led to the crash that killed two people on Biscayne Bay. Real estate tycoon Steven Posner (pictured left) died in the high-speed boat crash near Miami.

“It hits a lot closer to home when you actually know the people involved,” said Randy Sweers. He owns, a marina in Pompano Beach. Sweers knew Posner for many years. He also knows the operator of the second boat, Fritz Eigelshoven. In fact, Sweers sold Eigelshoven the boat involved in yesterday's crash.

“It was stated they were racing and things of that extent, but that was actually not the case,” said Sweers. “Fritz's boat actually had some mechanical difficulties and was traveling at a fairly low rate of speed,” he said.

Posner, 67-years-old, was the son of the late corporate raider Victor Posner. Authorities say a friend of Posner's, 60-year-old Clive Warwik, was killed, and that the tycoon's 64-year-old cousin, Stuart Posner, was seriously injured. Both men were aboard Posner's boat.

Officials say Posner's 44-foot race boat and a similar 46-foot vessel crashed into each other, and that the operator of the second boat, 27-year-old Eigelshoven of Fort Lauderdale, suffered minor injuries. A passenger on the second boat was not hurt.

The crash happened about 1 p.m. Monday in clear weather. The Fish and Wildlife Commission said the two boats -- each capable of speeds approaching 100 mph -- appeared to be racing before colliding, according to witnesses.

Friends and family members said Posner loved fast boats and entertaining guests.

“I guess if there's any consolation to it, he definitely passed away doing something he truly loved,” said Sweers.

Steven Posner made headlines a decade ago in a battle with his father over trust fund money. The matter was settled in 2001 and netted Posner an estimated $100 million in real estate holdings.
The deal was struck after father and son tossed a gold coin before a Miami judge to determine Steven Posner's share.

Victor Posner died in 2002.

Steven Posner's sister, Gail, died earlier this year of cancer. She left millions of dollars for her two dogs in a will that was challenged by her son.

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