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Coast Guard Warns Of Debris Washed Into Lakes

3:34 PM, Jun 16, 2013   |    comments
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Buffalo, NY - Thousands of boaters in Western New York are now being warned to keep a sharp eye out for another form of a hazard to navigation. It turns out the recent heavy rainfall is causing sunken logs and other debris to wash into the lakes and other waterways according to members of the Coast Guard - Buffalo Unit.

You can can actually see more of that floating or partially submerged debris in some areas along the shoreline. And it's becoming more of an issue. The Coast Guard in Buffalo had some recent calls from boaters in distress from an underwater strike. One occurred near Grand Island on Saturday. Boatswain Mate Second Class Blake Caraballo says "Earlier in the day we had a vessel strike a submerged object. We believe it was a log and they lost their prop and became disabled due to the hitting the log." 

It can be very dangerous. Investigators from the Niagara County Sheriff's Office believe a woman in her powerboat was killed two weeks ago from the impact of a collision with a submerged object in Lake Ontario near Olcott Beach. It ripped the hull and bow of her boat.

So the Coast Guard has some important suggestions for boaters. Caraballo says "There are objects that are uncharted and there are objects that are drifting. They're there one day and the next day they're gone such as logs and other debris. And in that instance, that's when you need to have a good lookout for your vessel and always make sure you're paying attention to your surroundings. And always have a safe speed. Be able to stop in the time needed to avoid a collision with something."  

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