Family of windsurfer killed in Lake Mendota crash demands documents, may sue

MADISON (WKOW) -- The family of the windsurfer killed in a collision with a boat on Lake Mendota has filed a motion in Dane County court to see records related to the crash that killed Yu Chen.

The 43-year-old was killed in a collision with a University of Wisconsin Lifesaving Station power boat the afternoon of May 31.

The motion claims records related to the crash contain key evidence and are being withheld by the university, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and Dane County Sheriff’s Office in the death investigation.

“The state and county records will likely show that the boat was traveling too fast for conditions, that the boat’s crew was inattentive or both,” said Jay Urban, who is the attorney for the family. “The state may be refusing to share facts about the incident because it wants to avoid liability and doesn’t want to admit what really happened.”

Urban adds that the information is needed to build a case for a potential lawsuit, and that state law mandates a lawsuit against the state be filed with all relevant facts within 120 days of an incident.

In a release sent to 27 News, Urban says that despite the family’s request to inspect the boat immediately after the death, the vessel has already been returned to service. Also, he states the DNR will not share any data from the boat or allow an inspection.

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