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Why this shouldn’t have happened

January 29th, 2012 · 1 Comment


Teen kayaker rescued on Willamette River http://www.kgw.com/news/local/Teen-critical-after-rescue-on-Willamette-River-138291259.html

This shouldn’t have happened. For those of you outside of the area, we’ve had a tough couple weeks of rain, and a bit of snow. There are some small rural highways that are still underwater from flooding. Here’s what I see need to be learned from this situation:

1- The water is high. There’s all sorts of crap in the water right now. Forests, docks, cars, you name it. Its all in the water and moving at a pretty good clip. When rescued, an hour later, they were 6 miles downstream from where the first accident happened. Yeah, the river’s moving.
2- Its cold. 40 degrees cold. Yesterday, when this accident happened, it was actually a nice day out. I’d imagine they weren’t wearing appropriate padding gear, and dressing for immersion.
3- There were 3 guys in kayaks. One guy ended up out of his kayak. How were the other two unable to get him to safety?? That’s where I’m the most confused. Ok, so the kid is suffering from shock of the cold water, but it seems he was still able to hold onto his dad’s kayak. This is where dad needs to start paddling to shore.

I’m still at a bit of a loss.

Worst part is that wasn’t the ONLY kayak rescue in the Willamette yesterday. There was another, less dramatic rescue just earlier that day in the same area.

Tags: Safety

1 response so far ↓

  • 1 Jess // Jan 29, 2012 at 8:01 pm

    I think the KGW article leaves a lot of questions unanswered. I, too, would like to know if they had the proper equipment and attire. And, I agree, if only one of them capsized, how were the other two unable to get him to shore or out of the water? Also, why did one of the kayakers have to get to shore in order to call for help? Why in the world didn’t he have his cell phone on him?

    I can see the river from my office window and there are HUGE things floating down river. It looks like an incredibly dangerous place to be in any vessel but especially one so low to the water (limiting long-range visibility of floating objects) and with limited speed (to get out of the way of said objects). I’m certainly glad that the kid is alive!

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