The News Desk is a collection of news, notes and breaking items affecting the Fredericksburg community.
Victim found in Rappahannock River
We’ll have more information on the victim as authorities release more details.
A man was said to have been spotted on some rocks, and then disappeared. Here are updates as they were reported on the Falmouth Volunteer Fire Department Twitter feed: (note: time stamps are approximate)
10:10: p.m.Falmouth units en route to a water rescue at the Falmouth Bridge. Operating on Inc Channel 1.
10:10 p.mMSU and Boat 1 on scene. Fredericksburg units assisting. Bystanders reporting a male missing in the water for 20 minutes.
10:10 p.m. Command putting rescue swimmers in the water to conduct a search and requesting assistance from US Park Police Helicopter Eagle 1.
10:20 p.m. US Park Police Eagle down due to weather. Contacting Virginia State Police Helo. Subject still missing at this time.
10:25 p.m. Three rescue swimmers from Falmouth and two from Fredericksburg actively searching the surface around the “last seen point”.
10:40 p.m. Command advising units still in “rescue mode”. Pulling rescue swimmers out, transition to dive operations. Stafford Sheriff’s assisting.
11:19 p.m. Virginia State Police Helo en route with FLIR system. Units getting a dive plan together with Stafford Sheriff’s Office.
11:48 p.m. Command advising divers are about to enter the water at the last seen point. VSP Helo is still responding.
12: 09 a.m. The Dive Group has advised Command that the victim has been located.
More than 80 people have drowned in the Rappahannock River, since 1985 according to Free Lance-Star Archives. The most recent drowning was a 32 year old Sterling man, who drowned in the Rappahannock in Aug. 2010.
River safety tips
- Do not assume that any body of water is safe.
- Respect the river. The Rappahannock has strong currents, an uneven riverbed with deep holes, rocks, roots and other obstacles.
- Never wade, swim, tube or boat alone.
- Always wear a personal flotation device, no matter what you’re doing on the river.
- Wear shoes and appropriate clothing.
- Know how to swim.
- Do not drink or take drugs if you are planning any type of river activity.
- If you see someone in trouble in the river, call 911 immediately.