Accident Database

Report ID# 47459

  • Caught in Low Head Dam Hydraulic
  • PFD Not Worn or Present
  • Other
  • Failed Rescue

Accident Description

First responders confirm 1 dead after kayak swept over dam along Chattahoochee River

March 30, 2019

CHAMBERS COUNTY, Ala. (WRBL) - First responders confirm to News 3 one person is dead and several people are injured after a kayak was swept over a dam in the Chattahoochee River in Chambers County Saturday.

Kerry Pickard with The East Alabama Fire District says crews performed a water rescue Saturday afternoon after a kayak containing two people was swept over one of the low head dams.

Rescuers were able to quickly locate the victims with help of bystanders. Multiple victims, some with life-threatening, injuries were moved through rugged terrain and across water by boats to awaiting ambulances.

At last check, one of the kayakers passed away from their injuries.

Mother drowns, son survives after kayak goes over a low head dam along Chattahoochee River 

by Elizabeth White; 

HARRIS COUNTY, Ga. (WRBL) -  The name of a mother killed when her kayak swept over a dam during a family outing on the Chattahoochee over the weekend has been released. 

The Georgia Department of Natural Resources confirms 37-year-old Fallon Wells of Henagar, Alabama was killed when Wells and her 11-year-old son went over a low head dam resulting in her drowning on Saturday, March 30th.  

East Alabama Fire District responded to the water rescue near Crowhop Dam, in Harris County, Georgia.  Deputy Fire Chief Kerry Pickard tells News 3, four family members were in two kayaks along the Chattahoochee and water had been generating since that morning. Pickhard says the current was quick at it appears one kayak was able to make it to an island, but the other went over Crowhop Dam in Harris County, Georgia. 

"Rough terrain required efforts from multiple emergency crew members who were able to quickly locate the victims and get them out of the water and into ambulances.  A total of four patients, from two kayaks, were transported by East Alabama Fire District. Emergency crews performed life support measures while transporting one victim to East Alabama Medical Center but were unable to revive them. Three others were injured in the incident but are expected to be okay " said Pickard. 

Mark McKinnon with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources tells News 3 the victim was with her family at the time of the drowning. 

"Georgia Game Wardens responded to a boating incident on the Chattahoochee River in Harris County, GA that resulted in one fatality. Upon arrival, they learned that a family of four were kayaking on the river when the mother and 11-year-old son went over a low head dam resulting in the drowning death of the mother. The father and daughter were able to stop before going over the dam, and the father jumped in attempting to rescue the victim, but he was unsuccessful.  None of the family members were wearing life jackets," said McKinnon.

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