Man drowns after Pärnu County river boat capsizes

The boat involved in Thursday's drowning incident.
The boat involved in Thursday's drowning incident. Source: Lõuna päästekeskus

A man has drowned in Pärnu County after a boat capsized, the Rescue Board (Päästeamet) says. First responders say the victim, along with two other men, were not wearing life-jackets at the time of the accident.

The emergency services received a call at just before 3.40 p.m. Thursday informing them that a boat had capsized on the Emajõgi River, close to a nature center in Luunja municipality, and that one of the three crew could not be found.

By the time first responders arrived, the men had been in the water for close to half and hour, with two men visible and the vessel, a small power boat, partly submerged.

While the two men, both of them over 50, were brought safely to shore by rescuers and then taken to hospital, the third, aged 51, was pronounced dead at the scene.

Rescuers say they found life-jackets stowed inside the vessel. Wearing one can save lives, they added, and is in any case a mandatory piece of equipment when boating on any open water in Estonia.

A total of 13 people have drowned in Estonia so far this year.

The boat itself was later towed ashore by a Police and Border Guard Board vessel.


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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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