Accident Database

Report ID# 3548

  • PFD Not Worn or Present
  • Does not Apply
  • High Water

Accident Description

Kile Kinney’s last post on Lehigh Valley Whitewater messageboard

 I just got off the ledges today where there was actually a rescue going on. It was some tubers that had some trouble. They are fine. But I did talk to them about this incident. They told me he and his friends did not have lifejackets on and they were in Rec. boats. His friends told him that he went into a hole and disappeared for a second then shot out of the water. This is when it all went bad. He did have water in his lungs, so it was a drowning. It is sad to lose anyone but this should really teach us to wear our lifevests and promote it to others.

Rick Bown (via email)

The Ledges are about a mile or two above Walnutport. A series of small ledge features create many long standing waves/wave holes that are popular with the playboaters. I’ve only been there once at lower flow and some of the features were pretty sticky at those levels.

Leon1554's post on Lehigh Valley Whitewater messageboard:

The level was was high. The band of rain fell below Lehighton. The gauge spiked at over 6000 in Walnutport. The Aquishicola (near Palmerton) was over 1000, so I would say that the reading was legitimate.



Allen Township man dies following kayaking accident on Lehigh River

A 34-y/o Allen Township man died on Sun. (08-07) while kayaking on the Lehigh River in Washington Township, Lehigh Co., according to Pennsylvania State Police at Bethlehem. Michael McDonald was kayaking with 3 friends when he fell out of the kayak near the Route 873 bridge. McDonald struggled to swim to shore, but did not make it. One of McDonald's friends dragged him out of the water and summoned emergency crews. McDonald was taken to the Palmerton Hosp. in Carbon Co. where he was later pronounced dead. The Carbon Co. coroner said neither a cause nor manner of death has been determined. An autopsy is scheduled for Tue. State police are labeling McDonald's death accidental.

Join AW and support river stewardship nationwide!