A Deer Park man lost his foot Saturday after his left leg was hit by a boat attempting to avoid a collision with the man, who had borrowed his friend’s personal watercraft on Twin Lakes north of Rathdrum.
Brynne Malone, 48, borrowed a Sea-Doo personal watercraft about 4 p.m. Saturday and was riding north toward a narrow waterway connecting the two lakes just as a 17-foot Sea-Ray came through, said Kootenai County sheriff’s Sgt. Matt Street.
Jon Carlson, 40, of Merced, Calif., was driving the Sea-Ray with several people on board when Carlson saw the personal watercraft approaching from his left.
Malone “turned really hard to his left to avoid collision and was ejected,” Street said. “Carlson was turning right to avoid the collision, and his prop hit the other guy.”
The prop hit Malone’s left leg, severing his foot just above the ankle. Another nearby boater got Malone out of the water and took him to a private dock to await medical personnel. The foot was not recovered, Street said.
Alcohol was not a factor in the crash and no citations were issued, Street said.
According to navigation rules, Malone would have been at fault, Street said. “But at this point, we figured he suffered enough.”
Malone was in stable condition and spoke with deputies on Sunday, Street said.
In another incident about midnight, a boat ran into trouble on Lake Coeur d’Alene after the fireworks display, Street said.
Four adults, four kids and a dog were in a boat, attempting to return to the Mica Bay Boater’s Park when they took a wrong turn into Kidd Island Bay.
“They ran through the shallows and ran the boat aground into the marsh there,” Street said. “There were no injuries to the people on board. The boat is still out there.” Street said a commercial boat service or crane would be needed to retrieve it.
Street used both incidents to remind boaters to use extra precautions on one of the busiest boating weekends of the year.