Date
Victim
Victim Age
River
Section
Location
Gage
Water Level
Difficulty
Cause
Cause Code(s)
Injury Type(s)
Factors Code(s)
Experienced/Inexperienced
Private/Commercial
Boat Type
Status

Accident Description


On June 20th a 41-year-old woman fell from a raft in Fowler's Rapids on the Folsom Gorge section of the South Fork of the American when her boat ran the wrong side of the river and hit a large hole. This was a one-boat private trip, so there were no others around to help her. Her husband swam successfully into an eddy, but she did not. Her body was found three hours later at the end of the run, below Satan’s Cesspool, stripped of its PFD.

From: Austin -->Newsgroups: rec.boats.paddle -->

Subject: 2nd drowning SFK American - Satan's Cesspool

Helicopters were searching the American River Gorge at Satan's Cesspool for a private woman rafter after she was washed out of her raft. The news reported that a 41 year old woman's bady was found 3 hours later. An outfitter said there were many people in the water both private and commercial due to the high flows.

California, which has experienced both a heavy snowpack and a cool spring, is in for a prolonged period of extremely high water. Already eleven rafting fatalities have been reported; two involved a mother and child on an air mattress, but the rest are for real! Three occurred within a few days of each other on the South Fork of the American near Lotus, California. A popular Class III+ summer run at 1200-1600 cfs, at 6,000-8,000 cfs the river becomes very continuous and turbulent. At this point it should be considered heavy class IV-IV+.

Most of this information was reported by AW Director and Friends of the River conservationist Richard Penny.

 

On June 20th a woman fell from a raft in Fowler's Rapids on the Folsom Gorge section of the South Fork of the American when her boat ran the wrong side of the river and hit a large hole. This was a one-boat private trip, so there was no backup. Her body was found at the end of the run stripped of its PFD.