Accident Database

Report ID# 3970

  • PFD Not Worn or Present
  • Hypothermia
  • Other

Accident Description

ayaker: 'We're lucky to be alive'

By Harrison Gardiner June 22, 2015

Colesville, NY (WBNG Binghamton) An air-boat was needed to rescue a kayaker Sunday after a strong current threw the operator from their kayak. They, along with two others, were out on the Susquehanna River Sunday. None of the kayakers were wearing life jackets. In a message to WBNG, one of the kayakers said he and his friends are lucky to be alive, after one of the kayaks became air locked between the water and a tree. "He was actually stuck in the river, hanging on to a log. He was rescued by the hovercraft first," said Seamus McNally, Ouaquaga Fire Chief.

Safety experts said it is important to travel in groups -- but having and using the proper equipment is equally as important. One of the most important pieces of equipment is a life vest. "Have something to flag people down with. A whistle, an air horn, anything," said Trevor Yarrington, manager of Rt. 96 Power & Paddle. "Have a throw line. Basically any rope that you can throw out with a floatation device at the end to pull people back with and don't ever get farther away from shore than you are comfortable swimming." One of the kayakers said that all three of the kayakers had life vests with them, but were not wearing them. New York State law does not require kayakers to wear life vests between May 1 and Nov. 1. All three people rescued Sunday escaped without injury according to the Harpursville Volunteer Fire Department. Safety experts said anyone who uses kayaks and canoes should practice tipping them and getting back on in shallow water.

Kayaker rescued from Susquehanna River By Stephen Adams

By Bryan McSorley

June 21, 2015

Town of Colesville, NY (WBNG Binghamton) An evening on the water almost turned into tragedy before a hovercraft rescued a kayaker stranded in the Susquehanna River Sunday evening.The kayaker was paddling down the river with two other kayakers when they encountered rapids that threw one person into the water. While the two others went down river to get help, the kayaker held onto a log and waited to be rescued.

The person was not stranded for long. A fourth party heard screaming and called 911, according to fire crews. Harpursville, which has a hovercraft for situations such as these, sprung into action. "Once the call came in, Harpursville already did hear it and they were manned and waiting for us to make the call for them to approach," said Oauquaga Fire Chief Seamus McNally. "Once we committed to having them here, they were here within just a few moments." McNally said the rescue was completed in about 15 minutes. None of the three kayakers, who were in their mid-20s, were wearing their life preservers, McNally said. No injuries were reported.

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