Initially, it looked like an awesome story of survival - if a close call.
The Pasco Sheriff's office reported that people on the the boat had to be rescued from the water.
Port Richey Police Chief Gerard DeCanio told the AP that the shuttle boat, which ferries people back and forth to the Tropical Breeze Casino Cruise, began experiencing engine problems soon after it left the dock in Port Richey.
"What he did was he brought (the shuttle) closer to shore, actually nearly beaching the boat", DeCanio said of the captain soon after realizing the engine troubles. "It's a insane world, dangerous, and things happen", said Erik Soujanen, Captain of the Gill Dawg rental boat that travels the same route as the casino shuttle boat daily.
The boat was in shallow enough water that people were able to wade to the shore of a nearby neighborhood, where neighbors aided them with towels and water.
"We were terrified for everyone on board because they were jumping out very slowly", Bakr Jandali said. "They were so cold".
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Williams said at one point he thought the police were escorting the bus, not realizing the situation on the back of the bus. The Sheriff's Office is recommending that he be charged with making terroristic threats, a felony, and disorderly conduct.
Temperatures in the afternoon fell to as low as 43 degrees.
"If we didn't show up at the time we did, there were going to be serious consequences", Zimmerman said. "It was all hands on deck", he said.
Culbreath said he doesn't know how to swim and he was afraid to get into the water.
A Long Island native is being hailed a hero after a fire on a boat forced dozens of passengers to leap for their lives into the chilly waters off Florida's Gulf Coast.
When the fire broke out and the boat was abandoned, news reports say as many as 40 people entered the water immediately.
She said no one has threatened legal action against the company.