Two kayakers found themselves in trouble in the San Joaquin River on Thursday when they collided with trees in the rushing water and their inflatable kayak popped.
Fortunately for them, they dialed 911 and, along with a dog, were rescued by Fresno Fire Department personnel. In addition to surviving the brush with danger, they were cited by sheriff’s deputies for illegally accessing the river.
According to a Fresno County Sheriff’s Office news release, one of the kayakers said, “I am an experienced kayaker, but the water is crazy out there right now.”
It figures to get even crazier in future weeks as temperatures rise and more water from the “Big Melt” is released into the San Joaquin and Kings rivers below major dams.
Violators Face a $225 Minimum Fine
“There is no timetable (for) when rivers will be reopened for recreational use,” sheriff’s spokesman Tony Botti said. “Water levels are being monitored on a daily basis and a decision to reopen the rivers will be made once these extraordinarily dangerous conditions improve.”
Fresno County Sheriff John Zanoni closed the rivers on March 14 because of the dangers posed to recreational users. Anyone breaking the ban faces a minimum fine of $225.