INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — The Indianapolis Fire Department is reminding boaters to use caution after three boats and eight people got stuck in the White River.
IFD crews responded to a reported need for water rescue Thursday around 8:15 p.m.
Three pontoon boats got stuck near 64th Street and Winthrop near the Broad Ripple Dam. According to the IFD, all of those onboard the boats were rescued and are fine.
Rita Reith from IFD says one boat got stuck; then the second came to help and also got stuck. A third boater showed up to assist and got stuck also. A fourth boater came to help, rescuing at least five of the passengers and taking them back to safety at the yacht club.
IFD had to rescue three of the eight people on board the boats and help them get to safety. Crews were able to perform what they call a shore-based tether with an IFD diver to walk out to the final passengers.
Reith says the original boat got stuck near edge of the dam but was pushed farther over while passengers were safely waiting in the other boat – showing how swift the current was at the time.
Reith further called this incident “a chain reaction” of people trying to help but says no one activated the 911 system – instead they tried to help on their own and got stuck. IFD says even experienced boaters need to stay off the water, due to the currents and the high water levels, at least until water levels recede.
The boats are still on the water at this time because DNR will determine the best way to remove them.
No one was hurt.