Georgia DNR Law Enforcement Division Rangers released a recap of Labor Day incidents that took place over the busy Labor Day weekend.
Rangers responded to boating incidents and drownings on waterways across the state. They will be shifting their focus to the thousands of hunters who will be entering the woods this hunting season.
Labor Day typically marks the unofficial end of boating season and September 6th is opening day for dove hunting season with archery season for deer beginning a week later.
The Labor Day weekend was unfortunately busier than Division officials had hoped, with the three-day holiday period yielding four drownings, nine boating incidents and 17 boating under the influence (BUI) arrests statewide. Last year, there was one drowning, six boating incidents and 18 BUIs for the holiday weekend.
“We were hoping for a less-eventful weekend on the state’s waterways,” said Lt. Col. Jeff Weaver, assistant director of DNR’s Law Enforcement Division. “We had Rangers across the state all weekend enforcing the boating laws and working boating incidents and drownings.”
Going into the Labor Day weekend this year, there were 68 boating incidents, six boating incident-related fatalities and 33 total drownings on Georgia waters. Rangers also had issued a total of 158 boating under the influence citations. In comparison, last year, going into the Labor Day holiday, there were 79 boating incidents, eight boating incident-related fatalities, 22 drownings on state waters and 140 BUI citations.
DNR Law Enforcement Rangers Report of Labor Day Incidents
- A possible drowning in the Kellogg Creek area of Allatoona Lake. The actual cause of death is yet to be determined by the ME.
- The drowning of a one-year-old near Long Cane Park on West Point Lake.
- A search for a missing kayaker on the Ocmulgee River in Jasper County. The subject was later found with injuries and was transported to a local hospital.
- The drowning of a 17-year-old male in Clark’s Hill Lake.
- A boating incident on Lake Hartwell near the Hartwell marina between a pontoon towing a skier and a ski boat. Two female subjects were transported to Ty Cobb Memorial in Lavonia with non-life-threatening injuries.
- A boating incident in which an idle boat with a skier in the water was struck by another vessel on Lake Lanier in the Ada Creek area at the north end of the lake. One female subject was injured.
- A possible drowning call in Big Creek on Lake Lanier where a female jumped from a stationary boat to swim and did not resurface. DNR Rangers are searching for the subject utilizing Side Scan and Sector Scan sonar and a remotely operated underwater vehicle (ROV). The Hall County Marine Patrol, Hall County Sheriff’s Office Dive Team and the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers are also assisting in the search.