Man Dies in Cal-Sag After Boats Collide

Sunday, Jun 20, 2010  |  Updated 9:29 AM CDT
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One man is dead after falling overboard when two boats collided in the Calumet-Sag Channel early Sunday, according to a Coast Guard source.

The boats collided shortly after midnight near the Ashland Avenue Bridge in the Cal-Sag Channel.

The Blue Island Fire Department Dive Team recovered the man's body, according to the source. The U.S. Coast Guard assisted with a shoreline search.

The Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office had not been notified of the death as of 7 a.m.

Calls to the Illinois Conservation Police were not answered and a message left with Blue Island emergency officials was not returned as of 5 a.m. Sunday.

An Illinois State Police master sergeant -- who received a 9-1-1 phone call from a cell phone of one of the people on one of the watercraft involved -- said the two boats were 17-foot pleasure craft.

One of the boats struck a log in the channel, which slowed it down before being struck by the second boat, the master sergeant said.

A man -- who was not wearing a lifejacket -- on the boat that was struck fell overboard prompting a lengthy search, according to the master sergeant.

Illinois State Police received the emergency call from one of the people on the boats because an ISP cell-tower was close to the location of the collision, the master sergeant said.

It is not uncommon for emergency calls to be picked up by the cell tower of an unintended agency, according to a source.

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