Man in canoe was not wearing a life jacket; search underway
Woman who was also aboard, was rescued.

BUSHKILL, PA- Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area officials announced Friday evening May 25 that rescue and recovery teams from the National Park Service and Portland Hook and Ladder Company will resume their search of the Delaware River for a missing man in the morning with assistance from PA Fish and Boat Commission officers. ...

Park Service searching Delaware River for missing boater

BUSHKILL, PA- Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area officials announced Friday evening May 25 that rescue and recovery teams from the National Park Service and Portland Hook and Ladder Company will resume their search of the Delaware River for a missing man in the morning with assistance from PA Fish and Boat Commission officers. 

The 39 year old NJ man was last seen just after 3 p.m. when the canoe he was in capsized just above the Interstate 80 bridge.  A second victim, a woman, was rescued by park visitors and brought to the canoe access at Kittatinny Point in Hardwick, NJ.  She was then transported by ambulance to an area hospital.  Neither was wearing a life jacket. 

The NPS has been monitoring river levels closely heading into what is expected to be a busy holiday weekend.  “The river is running high and water temperatures are running in the low 60’s,” explained Chief Ranger Eric Lisnik.  “It has been hovering right around the 8 foot mark at the Montague gauge and is predicted to remain right around that level through the weekend.  We recommend that only experienced paddlers go canoeing and kayaking on the river right now.”  The average river level at Montague is between 5 and 6 feet.  When the river is at 8 feet, wearing a US Coast Guard-approved life jacket is mandatory for all  boaters;  the NPS closes the river corridor and all access points when the river level reaches 15’.  Rises in river levels bring colder water temperatures, faster moving water, swifter currents, and increased sediment and debris. 

 

Due to current river conditions, swimming is prohibited at the park’s three beaches and is strongly discouraged elsewhere throughout the river corridor until water levels recede.  Picnic areas and other facilities at the beaches will remain open.   There are no lifeguards on duty. 

 

Park rangers recommend that everyone wear a life jacket at all times when on or near the water regardless of the river level.  The park offers a free life jacket loaner program for children at each of its 3 beaches.  Parents may borrow one for the day and return it when they are done.  “Even if your kids are just playing by the water and aren’t swimming, it’s a good idea to keep them safe with a life jacket,” Lisnik added.

 

Current river levels can be monitored at:   https://water.weather.gov/ahps2/hydrograph.