Canoe club talks river safety after deadly boating accident

Local News

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – After a deadly boating accident Tuesday, a Dayton group is reminding people of boating and river safety tips.

Larry Boden’s body was recovered from Great Miami River on Wednesday afternoon after he went into the water Tuesday evening and didn’t resurface.

Bethel Fire Department Chief Andy Ehrhart said even an experienced boater would have trouble navigating Great Miami River Tuesday.

“The conditions were very treacherous, the water conditions were very rough and turbulent,” Ehrhart said.

Scott Mackenzie, board member with the Dayton Canoe Club, said one of the most important things to do before boating is to be aware of water conditions.

“Today necessarily wouldn’t be a good day,” Mackenzie said. “We’ve had a lot flooding up stream and it all washes down into the Miami Valley.”

He said it’s best to wait until the flooding subsides before getting on the water.

He said some signs to look for are the water level along the bank and if there’s any debris.

“I came down here one night to look at some stuff and I saw just algae all over, and that’s not a normal thing you see this time of year, and a lot of debris, which can cause a lot of problems for an inexperienced paddler,” Mackenzie said.

Mackenzie also suggests to go with someone who knows the river, take boating or paddling lessons, and always wear a life jacket.

“Most of the rivers around here you can walk to shore,” Mackenzie said. “With the aggressive water, you want to be careful, watch out for foot entrapment, float on your back, get to shore, the boat isn’t important, your life is.”

Mackenzie recommends you check the USGS website to see if the rivers are safe. It tells you how many cubic feet per second of water is flowing in the river.

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