No, the Sunken Trump Boat Parade Photo Is Not Real

An image widely shared on social media purportedly showing one of the boats which sank during a pro-Trump parade on a lake in Texas is actually a doctored photo of a vessel which sank in June.

The photo, which shows a sunken boat with a "Trump 2020" flag raised from the back, has been tweeted out several times in the wake of the "Trump Boat Parade" on Lake Travis in Austin on Saturday.

Florida Rep. Shevrin Jones was one of the more high-profile names to share an image of the boat.

"Oh the symbolism of it all.......," Jones tweeted to his 15,000 followers. The post has since been retweeted more than 3,400 times.

Oh the symbolism of it all....... pic.twitter.com/TrGkKF10yg

— Shevrin “COUNT EVERY VOTE” Jones (@ShevrinJones) September 6, 2020

OMG! 😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂 pic.twitter.com/fn4ll5XCnM

— Mark Elliott (@markmobility) September 6, 2020

The original photo, minus the Trump flag, is actually of a 33-foot-long vessel that sank to the bottom of Grand Traverse Bay in northern Michigan in June.

The image first appeared on The Traverse City Record-Eagle website. All 10 people on board had to be rescued from the boat after it started taking on water on June 19 before eventually sinking.

In July, officials declared that the boat must be cleared from the bottom of the lake as they "don't want that left in the water," Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy spokesman Nick Assendelft told the Associated Press.

It is unclear if the 33-foot long boat has since been removed. The Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy has been contacted for comment.

Officials confirmed that several boats did sink during the boat parade on Lake Travis in Austin on Saturday although there are no reports of any injuries.

Kristen Dark, a spokeswoman for the Travis County Sheriff's Office (TCSO), previously told Newsweek that the department responded to "many calls for service for boats in distress" although the number of vessels which required help was not confirmed.

The Austin-Travis County EMS (emergency medical services) added in a tweet: "No injuries or medical emergencies have occurred as the result of these incidents & #ATCEMS has not been requested to respond to any of them."

The event in Austin was one of a number of pro-Trump boat parades which have taken place across the U.S. in the run up to November's election. Between 3,000 to 4,000 vessels were estimated to have taken part in a parade on a lake in Georgia on Sunday afternoon, according to Mark McKinnon at the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Access WDUN reports.

According to Guinness World Records, the current record holder for the world's largest boat parade is one that took place in Terengganu, Malaysia, on 13 September 2014, with 1,080 vessels.

However, in a statement to Newsweek, Guinness World Records said they do not consider "politically motivated" events for official records.

"Guinness World Records is an apolitical organization, determined to protect the integrity of our records by remaining politically neutral," a spokesperson said.

"Therefore, we do not accept record applications which we consider to be politically motivated or are looking to promote a political agenda."

boat
File photo. Boats adorned with U.S. and President Donald Trump campaign flags are seen on Lake Lanier during the Great American Boat Parade on September 6, 2020 in Cumming, Georgia. An image purportedly showing a boat which sank during a pro-Trump parade in Texas is actually a doctored photo of a vessel which sank in June in Michigan. Elijah Nouvelage/Getty