Boaters Pinned to Inlets: Fire Chief Warns of Dangers
The Pierre Fire Department Rescue Squad was dispatched at approximately 7:40 this morning to the Causeway for a report of boaters in distress. An 18-foot fishing boat with four occupants was pinned along the intakes on the upstream side of the Causeway in Pierre.
The boaters were fishing in the Missouri River when the boat drifted into the small bay along the Causeway where the inlets are located. The boat was unable to navigate against the current after being pinned along the inlets in the bay.
Pierre Rescue members were able to connect ropes to the front and the rear of the boat and use a number of responders to maneuver the boat to a position that allowed the operator to exit the bay. There were no injuries, and the boat suffered only minor damage from the incident.
“The area adjacent to the inlets can be difficult to navigate because of the strong currents that rush through this location and are discharged on the other side of the Causeway by the fishing piers,” said Fire Chief Ian Paul. “This area can be especially dangerous to children who are recreating in the area and may not be aware of the powerful current.”
Chief Paul reminds those enjoying the river to avoid the area near the inlets and to be mindful of strong currents downriver from the Oahe Dam including the Causeway and Tailrace.
Also assisting with the rescue were the Pierre Police Department, South Dakota Highway Patrol, and South Dakota Department of Game Fish and Parks.