Editorial—-Tragedy of great proportions

A young couple who had made their home America after leaving Mainland China encountered great tragedy March 16 doing exactly what promoters of Oconee tourism and recreation want. They were enjoying a day of recreation at one of the county’s popular attractions: Lake Jocassee.

The lake was heavily used on what turned out to be a windy day. Their kayak capsized. She swam to shore and eventually got help. He did not survive.

A spokesman at the State Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism tells 96.3/WGOG, “Whenever there’s a tragic incident like this at a state park we review what happened and try to learn how to reduce the likelihood of future similar occurrences.” The PRT’s Marion Edmonds said Duke Energy, the DNR, and the State Park Service are reviewing details of what happened.

An account we received from the scene suggests to us that consideration should be given to the placement of signs that give warning when certain weather conditions can turn what seems like a pleasant day on the lake into a tragic day. For instance, when the winds blow hard the potential increases for a light craft, such as a kayak, to capsize. In this case, the survivor of the March 16 capsizing made it to shore only to find she was alone in as remote an area as you are likely to find.

That’s our view. What’s yours?