Two female passengers were killed in a boat crash on the Piscataqua River off the Eliot Boat Landing on Saturday night.

The crash occurred when a 24-foot Boston Whaler, which was operated by a 59-year-old man and carrying three passengers – one male and two females – hit a buoy while underway about 8:15 p.m., the New Hampshire State Police Marine Patrol said in a statement.

A female passenger wearing a life jacket was ejected from the boat. The operator called for help and located the woman, who was unconscious in the water. He moved the boat to the boat landing, which was within sight of the crash’s location.

The three passengers were taken to Portsmouth Regional Hospital in New Hampshire, where the two female passengers died.

The male passenger was transferred to a Boston hospital. A Coast Guard official said Saturday night that one of those on the boat was a 7-year-old boy.

The operator of the boat was treated at York Hospital in York for a back injury and bruising.

The identities of those involved will not be released until next of kin are notified, police said.

Police said operator inattention might have been a factor in the crash, but it remains under investigation.

The Maine Marine Patrol, Eliot police, Eliot Fire Department and the Coast Guard helped at the scene.

Police said anyone with information about the crash should contact Sgt. Joshua Dirth at 603-227-2115 or by email at [email protected]

Beth Quimby can be contacted at 791-6363 or at:

[email protected]

Twitter: bquimby