Accident Database

Report ID# 772

  • PFD Fell Off
  • Does not Apply
  • One Boat Trip

Accident Description

On June 29, 2002,Victor Cordell of Yellow Springs, OH, was canoeing the Mad River when a tree branch struck him and knocked him from his canoe. Cordell hung onto the branch for awhile, but was swept downstream. Cordell, 77, could not swim and was wearing an improperly-fastened PFD. A passerby unsuccessfully attempted to revive him.

A 76-year-old man drowned after falling out of a rented canoe on Ohio's Mad River on June 29. Victor Cordell was paddling this Class-I stream with a friend when an overhanging limb hit both of them hard. Cordell was knocked out of his boat. His life vest came off, and he disappeared underwater. A bystander saw him floating face-down in the river, pulled him ashore, and began CPR.

Paramedics arrived soon afterwards and pronounced him dead at 6:30 p.m. His friend was not injured.

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