River hazards abound this tubing season – Lake Cowichan Gazette

Following two calls for river rescues last week, two of the region’s search and rescue teams chose to warn the public of the dangers they discovered on the Cowichan River ahead of the popular tubing season. in the river.

The Cowichan and Ladysmith Combined Swiftwater Rescue Team was recently called in to rescue a group that included a two-year-old child.

“Yesterday we had to rescue a number of adults and a child after two of the adults ran into and under a log hazard downriver from Vimy,” said Jeff Lewis, one of the crew chiefs. rapid water, June 22. “Fortunately no one needed hospitalization, but both adults were injured. Their raft is still stuck in the dangerous wood.

The team leader said that due to the November floods, the existing timber hazards have worsened and there are new ones stretching all the way down the main stream where the tubers float, “which will only tighten as the water level drops”.

Lewis said the whitewater team paddled from Cowichan Lake to the Allenby Road bridge and noted that there were “extremely dangerous wood hazards on most common sections of the river: Little Beach at Skutz, Stoltz Pool at Sandy Pool, Sandy Pool at Vimy, and Vimy at Allenby Road Bridge.

SAR teams have noted that the cleanest stretch of the river runs from Lake Cowichan to Little Beach.

“We strongly recommend that the tubers stay on this stretch of river,” Lewis said.

He reminded adults “that you’re no good for your child if you don’t put on your PFD”.

Cowichan ValleyLake Cowichan

Tubing on the Cowichan River is a popular summer pastime. (Gazette file)