A nine-year-old girl was injured in a boating accident on the Suwannee River on Sunday, September 11, and authorities say they believe that falling water levels are to blame.
The Live Oak girl was injured when the 14-foot-long jon boat she was traveling in hit some rocks and ejected her near the Dowling Park boat ramp, reports the The Gainesville Sun. The newspaper says that the rocks are “normally well below the surface of the river, but instead are at or just below the surface this month because of the ongoing drought.”
The girl received lacerations on her knees and face, and required stitches. Three other people on the boat were uninjured, including the girl’s four-year-old sister, 45-year-old father, and her step-uncle.
“We started to hit record lows this spring in the upper Suwannee River, but it takes longer for us to reach records on the lower portions of the river,” said Suwannee River Water Management District hydrologist Megan Wetherington. “We haven’t gotten any type of tropical recharge, which is what we need to bring things up quickly at this time of year.”
The Florida injury lawyers at Steinger, Iscoe & Greene may be able to help.