14 Sep 2014
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UPDATE: Gwinnett Man Reportedly Killed in Lanier Boating Collision

Cumming residents also involved. Accident occurred overnight. Gwinnett EMS, Police were among the agencies involved.

UPDATE: Gwinnett Man Reportedly Killed in Lanier Boating Collision

Updated April 24

Stephen Blake Jones, 59, of Duluth was killed in that two-boat collision early Sunday on Lake Lanier, according to the Georgia Department of Natural Resources and 11alive.com. The name of the woman who was seriously injured has not been released. She remains hospitalized with injuries, the report said.

They were reportedly on a houseboat when it was struck by a 21-foot ski boat off East Bank Park early Sunday.

The occupants of the ski boat, Steven Parker, 32, and Ashley LeBlanc, 30, both of Cumming, swam from their damaged ski boat to shore and flagged down a motorist for help, 11alive.com reported. Parker and LeBlanc were treated at a local hospital and released.

Capt. Tommy Rutledge of Gwinnett Fire/EMS said authorities received a 911 call from a passing motorist on Buford Dam Road.

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According to authorities, two of the victims (man and wife) in their 30s were crossing the lake in a ski boat when they reportedly struck an unknown object in the water. The couple realized that their boat was damaged and was taking on water, and they decided to swim for shore to get help.

The couple climbed a bank to nearby Buford Dam Road and flagged down a passing motorist. According to responders, the two were wearing life jackets when firefighters arrived. The man and woman were transported to a nearby hospital by Forsyth County for evaluation of minor injuries.

Then, the search immediately began for the second vessel and anyone who might have been in distress in the water.

Authorities located the second boat around 5 a.m. Sunday in the Shoal Creek area of the lake near East Bank Park. WSB-TV reported Sunday that this boat was a houseboat.

The body of an adult male was found in the water within the first 30 minutes of the search. Also, an adult female was found aboard the damaged vessel.

The identity of the deceased man has not been released. The body has been turned over to the Gwinnett County Medical Examiner for positive identification and cause of death determination. The woman was transported to a nearby hospital (emergency status) in serious condition, authorities said.

Rescue boats from DNR, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and Forsyth Fire were deployed. Assistance was also requested for air support provided by the Gwinnett Police Aviation Unit. 

The scene has been turned over to DNR Officers and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

Suwanee Patch will have further updates on this incident.

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