Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Trouble in Brentwood Bay

According to the Victoria Times-Colonist, a canoeist got into trouble halfway between Mill Bay and Brentwood Bay yesterday, an area that we often kayak.
The weather was very stormy and wind warnings were posted yesterday evening when passengers on the Mill Bay ferry noticed that a man in what appeared to be a small canoe was making a bailing motion and waving. Alerted by the passengers, the ferry's crew swung into action and the captain pulled the ferry as close to the man as he could. That's when a wave knocked the man (who didn't seem to be wearing a PFD or any cold water gear) into the bay.
He and his canoe were pulled from the water by the crew a few moments later, but some passengers believe that without the ferry crew's intervention he might have died out there. The water was very cold.
He was taken to hospital, and he and his canoe are fine.
He said the weather was fine when he started his paddle, one he does regularly, but the weather quickly turned nasty once he was in open water.
A good reminder to check those weather reports and dress for a dunking!


  1. Huh.. I've seen that happen before :) must be fun when the conditions swing around like that in an open cockpit craft. Tsk tsk for no pfd and no warm clothes - that's just negligent really. He's very lucky someone spotted him.

  2. Lucky yes -- but you make it possible for luck to help you if you're prepared for likely conditions. Wearing a PFD is not only good sense, it's good manners.
    Remember when Bernie flipped in January, under the Gorge Bridge? No danger, because he was in a wetsuit and PFD and knew how to swim. The two guys who flipped their canoe there an hour later felt it was life-threatening because they were dressed in hoodies and jeans. Gotta be prepared for ordinary weather conditions, like the conditions that changed on the guy in Brentwood Bay.