An Entire Fleet of Abandoned Duck Tour Boats Is Now Going to Auction
These 19 amphibious cars from Jeep, Kaiser, Studebaker and more were left behind after the tour company closed up shop.
The infamous duck boat tours that were once popular across the nation have all but disappeared after 40 people died aboard the attractions in the past 20 years. As such, the amphicars are being sold off by the lot with 19 heading to auction in Seattle over the next week.
Ride the Ducks' last major incident came in 2018 when a group of 17 people was killed in Branson, Missouri. Stormy waters caused the boat car to tip over while on Table Rock Lake, and it was permanently closed by its owner Ripley Entertainment in 2019.
The selection of boats includes models from Jeep, Kaiser, Studebaker, American General, and GMC. They were originally used for military purposes and are said to be similar to the amphibious vehicles that landed on the beaches of Normandy during the D-Day invasion. After the war, the military sold off surplus vehicles which were bought by a veteran who started using them to give tours. A few of the boats in the auction are almost old enough to have been involved in the war, but there’s no indication from the listing that there’s any connection.
Many of the boats still wear their tour company livery, and several have been outfitted with modern tech like GPS and cameras. There's an interesting mix of diesel and gas engines in the lot, but they're all said to have Allison automatic transmissions.
The auction is live now and will run through Wednesday, July 8. While the rigs are still capable of hitting the water, a better idea would be to buy just one and have the ultimate conversation piece at your local cars and coffee. Just be careful taking them on the roads, too, as these trucks have the same level of safety as an open-air wagon.
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