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Contact: Mary Plumb, 928-608-6202
At approximately 2:19 p.m. on August 27, Glen Canyon National Recreation Area Dispatch received a 911 call reporting a vessel coming into the Wahweap Marina with a male drowning victim on board. National Park Service Rangers and a Coconino County Sheriff’s Deputy responded, arriving at the Wahweap Boat Tour dock at 2:23 p.m. CPR was in progress on a 20 year-old male from St. Petersburg, Russia. Rangers determined the scope of the incident was larger, including a male and a female with propeller cuts to their legs, three near-drowning victims and one distraught male. Page Fire Department and Classic Air Medical responded to assist. Aramark employees assisted responders with on-scene logistics. The 20 year-old male was pronounced deceased on scene and has been identified as Aleksandr Aleksandrovich Kurganov of St. Petersburg, Russia. The female propeller cut victim was transported by Classic Helicopter to Dixie Regional Hospital in St George, Utah. The distraught male and male propeller cut victim were transported to Page Banner Hospital by the NPS. The three near-drowning victims refused medical transport. The victim was released to the Coconino County Coroner for autopsy.
It was reported that approximately 29 young-adult, foreign nationals rented three pontoon boats from Wahweap. They were in the Wahweap Bay near the Castle Rock Cut. A large number of the party jumped into the water to swim, without life jackets (PFDs). Winds picked up and several of the swimmers began having difficulty. Boat operators in the group were able to pick many of the swimmers out of the water, some of whom were near total exhaustion. Some of the swimmers were able to get to shore after a five to ten minute swim. The deceased was recovered by a member of his party in approximately nine feet of water. Two people sustained propeller cuts while bringing him on board one of the boats. CPR was initiated. They drove the vessel to Wahweap Boat Tours. The case is still under investigation by the National Park Service, Coconino County Sheriff’s Office and Utah State Parks.