Accident Database

Report ID# 654

  • Pinned in Boat against Rock or Sieve
  • Does not Apply
  • Cold Water
  • Failed Rescue

Accident Description

We also received more details on the unfortunate drowning death of Billy Danforth that occurred on June 17th. He was paddling Idaho's Class IV-V Teton River at low water with his girlfriend and another paddler when he pinned badly end-to-end in a narrow chute. Water washed over him and he lost consciousness The violent current quickly tore all the clothes off his upper body.

His companions, after attempting to reach him with throw ropes, waded out and tried to get to his boat by leaping onto it. The current was too strong, and neither one could hold on. After several attempts, Danforth's time had clearly run out. His girlfriend stayed at the scene while the other paddler hiked out to get help. During his hike the boat broke loose and floated downstream. Rescue squads spotted his body in a log jam nine hours later, but it got away from them as they attempted to recover it. He was finally found a week later.

Join AW and support river stewardship nationwide!