How much paddling experience do you think the Long Island Sound group had? I’d bet little to none.
Probably in rental boats; if you have the money, you’re good to go…
How many were wearing pfds? Maybe the child. Adults, probably none of them.
Paddle sports not the problem. Hubris, lack of experience & common sense probably was.
Have no clue how much trouble they can get in. Nobody even had a cell phone I guess. Even some people I know with experience say “oh the water is 56* how could they get hypothermia” Sad to say there should be warnings on craft about water temps. PFD should be mandatory to wearing not just on the deck.
I would love to hear the survival story.
Can you imagine the horrifying moment when you realize that you are being swept out to sea, you have a 26 year old mother and her 8 year old daughter with you, and you can’t get everyone back to the near shore?
Once you get beyond the blame game and calling out the stupid decisions, you’re left with a dire situation where blame doesn’t make a lick of difference - only survival. I really wonder how things went starting at that point? That would be incredibly interesting to hear, but probably horrifying to tell.
Had zero choice in the whole situation. Thank god she survived.
Not a new happening
It happens from time to time in that area.
What happens is that when wind blows from the north ( from the shore) and the tide is going out there is no sense of danger. Paddling out is a joyride. Tidal currents at Hammonasset are quite strong on the ebb.
Once you wake up and decide that you have gone far enough, return is impossible.
There is one rental facility in the area. They are very picky about giving an actual safety lecture. Last year we had three of us with kayaks and one that needed one .We said that we could give a safety briefing ( which we would have done). But we were most impressed when the rental staff said that giving a safety briefing was their job. Its highly doubtful they would have been renting anything that day.
I learned to paddle there in Madison and Clinton ( both of which have harbor patrol boats…so that’s why Clinton retreived off Long Island). The water is not cold but after drifting 14 miles in any sort of water ( even the Caribbean) hypothermia will happen.
I lament the tendency for people just to think boarding and kayaking are benign. They were innocents and duped by the appearance of the water IMO(it looks glassy from the south facing shore)
When I learned to paddle there I was mentored by a kayaking club ( Connyak) and learned about wind and tides and coastal currents. In turn I led trips and shared that with newcomers. More than once I saw the same conditions. I remember one day when I cancelled a club trip and several people groused. Later that night we heard of one kayaker that wound up in trouble and wound up in Greenport LI… But he was upright and still in kayak. He took a motel room and heard he was missing on the 11 pm news. It would have been nice had he called the Coast Guard…
Nowadays people strike out on their own
Rentals ? Shop Responsibility?
Does anybody know if they rented the boat and paddle boards at the State Park area? You would think a shop would have some way to go out and rescue people they have rented to, or would not rent if 40 kt gusts were predicted. Our local lifeguards hit the water to do searches for tourists caught in bad conditions all the time, I assisted once when huge waves caught a bunch of tourists unaware and washed them up into a cove with steep cliffs. Tourists just have no idea what they are getting into, ocean paddling is not Disneyland.
Yeah, 40 mph winds?
I have a hard time believing the craft were rentals. That area can get tricky without those winds, if the news story has the info right.
But it is a public beach and anyone can launch from it.
They all were wearing PFDs.
no rentals at Hammonasset
as of last week.. The beach is a peninsula about two miles long and has a river that flows along one side where there are salt marshes. It is quite sheltered for the first two miles.
After passing Meigs Point, its a different story
Again when I lived thee for twenty years there were a variety of rescues done there and we spent a lot of time ( EMS) looking for the missing. Often booze was a factor unfortunately ( though I doubt in this case). It was quite common for kayakers to come back to shore via motorboat. Its a busy boating area. I suspect it was not this day..
that NYT article explains a lot more. Glad the put her daughter in the kayak. RIP No word on the guy on a SUP off Long Islands south shore. He had no PDF on.
"paddle sports don’t kill people…
(you know the rest)
...I think this is a growing problem.
I paddle every summer in the Marquette, MI area, Grand Island, and Pictured Rocks, and I try to get over to the Apostle Islands. The last two seasons I've seen novices out in surprisingly challenging conditions.
I was out on Grand Island by myself, watching a group of novices in open cockpits being led by a guide with evidently not much more experience and an open cockpit - certainly not equipped or prepared to assist others. A group of doubles were being pushed by winds toward a rock bluff.
I hung back but in close proximity and watched things develop, but ultimately the guide got them out of trouble. He was clearly shaken. I was prepared to jump in and help, but I admit I had my own liability in the back of my head.
Have you (or anyone else here) ever experienced something similar, and what did you do?
I just see this getting worse. The Pictured rocks coastline is now cluttered with open boats, pontoon boats with dogs and coolers and boom boxes, people using pontoon boats for boating platforms for rec kayaks, you name it. It's just a matter of time before a rental company costs someone their life.
MAYBE NOT DISNEYLAND -BUT DISNEY WORLD?
I know what your concluding remark was meant to imply, and generally, the analogy and implications hold. But here’s a different take on “Disneyland” (sic), a chilling, horrifying story.
At least when we paddle in the Everglades, we’re primed, perceptive, and aware of such things when we
-Frank in Miami
I saw that