COVINGTON — For the second time in several hours First Responders found themselves looking to make a water rescue, this time on the Stillwater River, west of Covington.
A call of a “possible drowning” was received by Miami County Dispatch just after 7 p.m. where it was reported that a person had fallen out of their overturned kayak and gone into the raging Stillwater River near the Miami County Park District Stillwater Prairie.
Covington Fire Department, along with Miami County Sheriff’s Deputies and Miami County Park District Rangers immediately responded to the area, as did Covington Police.
Bradford and Piqua were contacted to respond with water rescue teams and Pleasant Hill fire was put on alert, as well.
As the departments took stations at bridges downstream from where the kayakers last reported position, a sheriff’s deputy who was searching the banks of the Stillwater downstream from the Rangeline Road bridge heard cries for help and ran to the sound.
As he arrived at the location, the 17 year old kayaker made his way to safety after grabbing a tree branch and pulling himself to the shore.
According to deputies on the scene, after the juvenile’s kayak overturned, he had the presence of mind to grab the kayak and climb back aboard the overturned craft and ride it down the river until he could grab the tree branch.
Apparently the boy was kayaking in the swift water with his brother when the incident occurred.
The young man walked away from the scene after refusing treatment.
Deputies on the scene issued a warning for anyone considering being around the water. Days of heavy rain, with more in the forecast have made rivers and creeks deep and fast … and not safe for water activities. Authorities advise everyone to stay away from the water until water levels recede.
Reach Mike Ullery at firstname.lastname@example.org
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