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Firefighters: Boat with 18 people with special needs capsized on Tempe Town Lake

Posted at 6:36 PM, Feb 28, 2017
and last updated 2017-03-01 10:05:39-05

Authorities say everyone was able to get to shore safely after a boat carrying more than a dozen people capsized on Tempe Town Lake.

According to the Phoenix Fire Department, initial reports are 18 young adults with special needs were on the boat when it overturned.

The Tempe Fire Department, which handled the call, said everyone on board was able to make it to shore.

According to the Tempe Police Department, those on board were all wearing safety jackets. 

ABC15 spoke to one man who saw the group in the water. He knew immediately what to do. 

"We heard the call and we all pulled in our paddles and pulled in another boat and we headed there to rescue them," he explains.  

For Victoria Gutierrez, making sure her daughter was OK became the main mission. 

"I kept asking everyone if they had seen her and I was really worried until I saw her."

The group was from an organization called Arizona Disabled Athletes. 

There were no injuries, though some were experiencing signs and symptoms of hypothermia. None were transported to the hospital.