According to a story from WIBC.com, with a bit more than half of 2011 passed, Indiana has already passed the total number of drownings for all of 2010.
We here at WildIndiana had guessed as much when we finally decided early in the summer that we wouldn’t post any further new stories of drownings (unless noteworthy to a state-wide audience) simply because there were too many to cover this year. It became obvious that we would get nothing done during the summer except post notices of drownings from around the state.
Such news is significant and important but would not be especially entertaining on a website devoted primarily to sharing the joy of the outdoors.
So, if you are an angler, someone who likes to swim in rivers or lakes, a boater, paddler or just someone who is contemplating venturing onto our wild waters, please heed the usual safety advice. First and foremost, wear your Personal Floatation Device, even if you think it is hot and dorky.
After all, we don’t have that many readers here at WildIndiana.com; we can’t afford to lose too many more.
This weekend will see waterways throughout the state and nation clogged with swimmers, scuba divers, anglers, boaters, waterskiers, paddlers, personal watercraft riders and every other manner of outdoor enthusiast. It also means that the alcohol will flow and there will undoubtedly be a boating-related tragedy somewhere in the state during the holiday weekend. Sadly, there probably will be more than one if past experience holds true.
So, as we head out this weekend to celebrate the greatest country in the world, let’s take an extra effort to be safe out there. Our goal should be to arrive safely at work, sunburned, bloated from bratwurst and all tired out from a great- and safe- weekend.
Here is a good story highlighting the problems from Lafayette television station WLFI:
MONTICELLO, Ind. (WLFI) – Thousands of Indiana boaters are expected to hit the water this holiday weekend, which is always one of the busiest boating weekends of the summer.
The Indiana Department of Natural Resources reminded boaters to play it safe on lakes like Freeman and Shafer.
Conservation Officer Matt Tholen said Freeman and Shafer are relatively narrow bodies of water, increasing the risk for boating accidents when hundreds of boats are running in the same area…
Earlier this month two men were injured, one critically, after their 33-foot boat hit a breakwater near the Port of Indiana in Lake Michigan around 3 a.m. According to investigators, the boat was traveling around 30-35 miles per hour though the speed limit for night-time boating in Indiana is 10 m.p.h.
One of the men was airlifted to the hospital. An joint Coast Guard/Department of Natural Resources investigation is ongoing.
Here’s a story that should be filed under “DOH!!” though everything ended up for everyone, including our perpetrator.
Earlier this month a Franklin county man got an extremely unpleasant surprise when he picked up what he believed was a common garter snake. The snake turned out to be a vemonous copperhead.
Zach Smith was working in his yard when he picked up the snake. As he did, the critter bit him on the finger. He was rushed to Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis where he was treated. Fortunately, the snake was young and Smith didn’t require anti-venom though there was concern about losing his thumb.
Now, things are fine and that includes the snake. Though we wouldn’t share Smith’s benevolent attitude, he wouldn’t permit the snake to be destroyed and it was released back into the wild. “It’s my fault,” Smith told doctors.
Fountain County – Indiana Conservation Officers and the Fountain County Sheriff’s Department recovered the body of a 35-year-old Crawfordsville man from Sugar Mill Lake on Tuesday.
Witnesses say the victim, Jeffrey Grady, was swimming after a floating tube when he went under and did not surface. It took five divers and a side-scan sonar boat to find the body which was 60 yards from the beach area.
The accident is still under investigation by the Department of Natural Resources Law Enforcement Division.