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Fatality on the Linville Gorge yesterday

Posted by brentaustin 
Fatality on the Linville Gorge yesterday
April 29, 2018 02:54PM
Just heard the news that open boater, Burton Greer passed away yesterday in the Linville. A solid accomplished boater that I did not know but had seen out on rivers. Clay has paddled with the brother. Terrible sad news. It is very beautiful in there and the whitewater is world class challenging. It has sure been a tough year already for our boating family at large. Sigh...
Brent
Re: Fatality on the Linville Gorge yesterday
May 03, 2018 01:05PM
Hoping this unfortunate event may provide some food for thought on risk management while on the water (and in general). It appears the rescuer wants to share for the sake of safety/etc, so I'm commenting to promote knowledge, yet also with the deepest respect for all involved and what they are going through.
I didn't know the victim but this accident really speaks to me, as it illustrates a somewhat common occurrence that I have observed and personally experienced when you become a more confident and proficient boater and negotiate the delicate balance of risk and reward on the water (for example, walk or run fist's hairy fairy at medium to higher level, which I seen go successfully and not).
Overall, It sounds as if the primary cause of the accident was a simple mistake made by a skilled boater: essentially, attempting to boof in an unknown rapid with an unforeseen hazard (and somehow making an error while boofing or being acted upon by an unforeseen rock or hydraulic that prevented a successful boof stroke in the proper river position). Secondarily, a contributing factor may be that an additional boater may have been beneficial for rescue in the below scenario (second rope, second had, one person goes for help while the other maintains a visual on the victim). Although it sounds as if the force of the water was very strong. Also, I spoke with the author of the accident description (primary rescuer), and it sounds like the victim was in a Braap, which may have promoted stern pinning.
How many times have you boofed (or simply ran a rapid) without scouting or without a boater with previous experience on the river leading (and only in a party of two)? It happens...
Enjoy life and live it to the fullest, but perhaps it's best to do so in a manner that conservatively manages risk for yourself and the boaters in your group.



Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 05/06/2018 09:05AM by Flunked.
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