WCO Report for Erie County 05/09/2007: Erie area, PA,
WCO Report Posted: May 08, 2007

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Posted by DWCO Randy Leighton on May 08, 2007 at 22:08:26:

Conditions: Steelhead season is all but over for the area with anglers now focusing on the wealth of opportunities that Lake Erie and Presque Isle Bay have to offer. Crappie fishing is slowly picking up as water temperatures rise in the Bay and the spring spawn begins. Pan fishing has been fair to good in Presque Isle Bay and bass anglers are increasing in numbers on both the Bay and along the Lake Erie shoreline. With the opening of walleye season on Lake Erie, anglers have already been spotted trolling the shallower shoreline waters. There have not been any reports as to any Lake Perch schooling up, although some perch are being caught in the Bay and off the North and South piers along the Erie Channel. Current Lake Erie water temperatures as of this writing are 57 degrees off Toledo, 47 degrees off Cleveland, and 44 degrees off the Port of Erie.

First Responder, Would You, Know What to Do?: First Aid and CPR training are invaluable skills that can mean the difference between life and death in a first response situation. Nearly all Law Enforcement officers have first aid training and in the case of PFBC officers, CPR certification is mandatory with annual refresher training. Area PFBC officers, Local EMS, State Police and local anglers had a there hands full with number of traumatic scenarios in 2006 with successful results due to good training and quick thinking. Training in CPR and first aid does not have to be limited to the professional sector and can provide anyone with the basic skills necessary to act quickly and effectively in a first response accident situation. First aid and CPR training and certification are available to most anyone through a number of local agencies including the local Red Cross. The following are a few of the the situations that occurred in Northwest Pennsylvania this past year:

4/17/06 WCO Jon Kay-first on the seen of a heroin overdose, victim was operating a vehicle and pulled off the road. Kay provided first aid, notified EMS & PSP

6/9/06 Boat fatality on Pymatuning Res.- 70 yr. old angler under water 45 minutes, heart beat restored by EMS. He survived two days but succumbed to injuries

6/16/06 WCO Ed Stuart & DWCO Ben Suchocki-first on scene of fatal boat collision, attempted CPR to male victim, who died of blunt force trauma. Accident involved a collision between PWC and 40' cigar type boat. Transported victim to shore

7/3/06 Two anglers at Eaton Reservoir-rescued angler underwater from fatal canoe accident, provided CPR, resuscitated him,notified 911 for LifeFlight Angler survived after two days in hospital but his two sons perished.

8/25/06 WCOs Jon Kay and Joe Morris-first on scene of drowning at Lake Arthur, performed CPR on victim with out success, transported victim to shore.

9/3/06 DWCO Randy Leighton- first on scene of two vehicle head on collision, provided first aid and notified EMS

Also last September DWCOs Ben Suchocki and Duane English, of Erie County, were on the scene of a suspected heart attack or sugar diabetes attack where gentleman died a couple days later. There has been at least one heart attack victim at Walnut Creek Access Area the last three years during Steelhead Season.

Walnut Creek Access: The Walnut Creek Access office is now open on a full time basis. Hours are Monday through Thursday, 8:00 AM to 6:30 PM. Friday and Saturday from 6:00 AM to 10:00 PM and Sundays from 6:00 AM to 8:00 PM. New and longer launch ramp docks are in place and dredging of the basin and channel have been completed. The Walnut Creek office can provide fishing licenses, ice, weather information, and most PFBC publications and literature...Vending machines and restrooms are available.

Recent Area Kids Fishing Derbies a Big Hit: The Elk Valley Sportsmen's Club and the Northwestern Sportsmen's Club recently held their annual kids derbies with overwhelming turnouts and success. The Northwest Sportsmen's event was held at the pond on the club grounds with over 80 kids enjoying the day. Medals were given to all and awards for the best catches were handed out. The club was recognized by the PFBC for outstanding service in the promotion of youth fishing programs in Pennsylvania. The Elk Valley Sportsmen's event was also a big hit with over 100 kids in attendance and similar awards handed out at the Girard Borough Park Pond. These 100 plus kids consumed over 300 hot dogs!. Both of these clubs are to be commended for their strong support and promotion of youth fishing in our area.

The U.S. Coast Guard's Most Recent Annual Boating-Related Accident Statistics:

697 fatalities - 3,451 injuries - nearly $39 million in property damage.
87 percent of drowning victims were not wearing life jackets.
Alcohol was either a direct or indirect contributing factor in approximately one-quarter of all boating fatalities.
About 70 percent of all boating fatalities occurred on boats where the operator had not received boating safety instruction.
The most reported type of accident was a collision with another vessel. However, capsizing and falls overboard are the most reported types of fatal accidents and accounted for the vast majority (59 percent) of all boating fatalities.
Overall, carelessness/reckless operation, operator inattention, excessive speed and operator inexperience are the leading contributing factors of all reported accidents.
Recreational boating accidents and drownings are especially tragic because the great majority cases they were likely preventable! As we begin the 2007 boating season and with the number of tragic accidents and drownings around the area in 2006, boaters should as always, be prepared by knowing all safety rules and regulations, understanding the limitations of their boat, assuring that their boat is properly equipped with all required safety equipment, and educating their passengers on the importance of wearing a PFD.

Local Weather: Wednesday Night Partly cloudy. Lows in the lower 50s.

Thursday Partly sunny. Highs in the lower 70s.

Thursday Night Mostly cloudy with a chance of showers and thunderstorms. Lows in the mid 50s. Chance of rain 30 percent.

Friday Partly sunny. Highs in the lower 70s.

Friday Night Mostly cloudy. Lows in the mid 50s.

Saturday Partly sunny. Highs around 70.

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