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Man killed in Jet Ski accident in West Linn

by: SUBMITTED PHOTO: KOIN LOCAL 6 - A Portland man was killed in an Jet Ski accident in West Linn Friday night. A Jet Ski accident on the Willamette River in West Linn killed a 39-year-old Portland man on Friday night.

On Aug. 23, just after 8 p.m., the Clackamas County Sheriff's Office was notified of a collision between two personal watercrafts on the Willamette River near the Cedaroak Boat Ramp.

Sheriff's deputies said the victim was Eryk Simmons. The operator of the other personal water craft was identified as 38-year-old Michael Bailey of Tigard. Bailey is cooperating with the investigation.

Deputies declined to release the name of the boy involved in the collision.

According to police, the three people, which included a Portland man and his 7-year-old son, involved in the accident knew each other and were enjoying the day on rented Jet Skis to celebrate the boy’s birthday. There were three passengers on the two jet skis, two were adults and one was a juvenile. All three were reported to be wearing life jackets.

One adult was driving and hit the other watercraft, which was being operated by the father and son. The collision caused the adult and the juvenile to be knocked off and into the water. 

A witness said the impact on the water was deafening. Dennis Ellison was there when both Jet Skis were coming into the ramp.

“The red one did not slow down like the other one did and I heard a huge bang. Then the little boy was in the river screaming. I called 911 immediately and let him know there was a WaveRunner accident with people in the water,” he told KOIN 6 News. “I did not know if the other individual was there, but when I got out to put him in my boat, another gentleman was in the water unconscious.”

A good Samaritan at the boat ramp who saw the accident helped pull the injured and unresponsive adult to the shore.

Paramedics and emergency personnel from Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue, American Medical Response and the Clackamas County Fire Department responded to the scene. Their efforts to revive the father were unsuccessful and he was pronounced dead at the scene. The juvenile, who appeared to have only minor injuries, was transported to an area hospital as a precaution. Police stated that the adult who was responsible for the collision has been cooperative with law enforcement to this point. 

The collision is currently being investigated by the Clackamas County Sheriff's Office Marine Unit, Clackamas County Sheriff's Office detectives and the Medical Examiner's Office. Their names have not been released at this time.

— KOIN Local 6 contributed to this story.




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