Authorities searching for possible drowning victim in Smyrna


RUTHERFORD COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) – Authorities in Rutherford County are on scene of a possible drowning at the Jefferson Springs Boat Ramp in Smyrna.

Officials say first responders were dispatched to the scene on Sharp Springs Road just before 7:30 p.m. Saturday evening.

An eyewitness told crews he was loading his boat into the water when he saw a man and his 6-year-old daughter sitting on a jet ski. The man hit the gas to the jet ski and he and his daughter fell off the back of it, into the water. Neither was wearing a life jacket.

The witness said the man could be heard yelling for help. Before the witness could make it out to the man and his daughter, some kayakers along the bank paddled out and were able to pull the daughter into one of the kayaks and get her safely back to shore.

The man, however, went beneath the surface. The witness went to the area where the man disappeared and, using his fish finder, jumped into the water a few times but was unable to make contact with the man, officials say.

Rutherford County Fire Rescue says two boats have been deployed and are now scanning the banks along the water to see if the man made it out safely. Teams have also called for a sonar system and are currently using drones to search the area as well.

Rutherford County Fire Rescue has also asked for help from divers with the Wilson County Emergency Management Agency and Metro Nashville’s Office of Emergency Management to help find the man. The Tennessee Highway Patrol helicopter and its FLIR infrared camera technologies have also been requested.

“We will be working on into the night to see if we can find the missing man,” said Captain Rose with Rutherford County Fire Rescue. “We are deploying all of the technology and assets we can for this search, and hopefully will know more soon.”

The daughter has been reunited with her mother who was not present during the incident.

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