New equipment finds kayakers missing on the Ocmulgee

lfabian@macon.comJuly 23, 2013 

A woman frantically called 911 late Monday after her husband and a friend had not returned from a kayak trip on the Ocmulgee River in Macon.

Shortly before 11:30 p.m., Macon police dispatchers called officers to the boat landing at the Spring Street entrance to the Ocmulgee Heritage Trail.

Macon-Bibb County firefighters began a river search and emergency medical technicians also responded to the call.

The fire department’s dive team put a boat in at Spring Street and started going upriver.

With the new high-powered light donated by the family of drowning victim Aaron Cross, the dive team searched the banks.

“It’s got a pretty good beam,” said Pvt. Garin Flanders. “It spins 360 degrees and up and down.”

At about an hour into the search, firefighters found the men out of the water at the Amerson River Park, near where Cross drowned in April.

“They were both fine,” Capt. Dewey Davis said.

The men told firefighters their wives had dropped them off at Pope’s Ferry and thought they could make it down to Spring Street.

The last contact they had with their families was at about 7:15 p.m. when they hit Arkwright Road.

Although the men got out at the park, it is only open Wednesday to Sunday from 9 a.m. until 7 p.m.

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