Man missing after boat crash on Lake Stevens

LAKE STEVENS — A 42-year-old man was missing on Lake Stevens on Thursday night after a ski boat slammed into a two-person racing shell he was rowing.

Police and fire teams were on the lake searching for the man, Lake Stevens Police Chief Randy Celori said. The man was last seen in the water about 7:45 p.m.

As of 9:30 p.m., a Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office helicopter was using a thermal-imaging device to search for the missing man. Crews hoping for a rescue were being pulled back about 9:40 p.m.

The ski boat, piloted by a 17-year-old Lake Stevens boy, appears to have struck the rowing shell near a boat launch on the east side of the lake. The ski boat reportedly left the scene for a time afterward, Celori said.

The teen and two others were on the lake to engage in wake boarding. The accident’s cause is under investigation and glare from the sun on the water is being examined as a possible contributing factor, Celori said.

Debris was in the water near where the man went missing, making search efforts difficult. He may have lost consciousness in the crash, said Perry Putnam, a battalion chief with Lake Stevens fire.

“He never came up,” Celori said.

The Lake Stevens Rowing Club racing shell was upside down about 500 yards from the shore when crews arrived.

It was one of several racing shells that were on the water as the team practiced, Celori said.

The other passenger in the rowing shell, a Snohomish woman, 50, apparently was uninjured.

More than a dozen members of the rowing club’s crew team were waiting in a parking lot near the boat launch. The crew members, adults and teens, declined to speak with a reporter.

Shane Laplaunt, who lives near the lake, said he’s seen many close calls over the years.

“A boat is like a car; it is a lethal weapon,” he said. “I’m all for having fun but people need to be careful.”

Laplaunt reflected a moment, then added, “It’s just a darn shame.”

The accident is the worst on the lake since July 2009. That’s when a ski boat carrying 10 people flipped after being hit by a wave, tossing everyone into the water. The boat’s pilot drowned. Others in the boat made it to shore.

At the time, nobody could recall another fatal boating accident on Lake Stevens.

Map of Lake Stevens

View Larger Map

Talk to us

> Give us your news tips.

> Send us a letter to the editor.

> More Herald contact information.

More in Local News

Kim Skarda points at her home on a map on Thursday, June 20, 2024 in Concrete, Washington. A community called Sauk River Estates has a very steep slope above it. There is a DNR-approved timber sale that boarders the estate properties, yet they were not consulted about the sale before approval. The community has already appealed the sale and has hired their own geologist to conduct a slope stability report at the site. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
Beneath steep slope, Concrete neighbors fear landslides from logging above

Nielsen Brothers plans to cut 54 acres of timber directly behind the community of 83 homes. Locals said they were never consulted.

Law enforcement respond to a person hit by a train near the Port of Everett Mount Baker Terminal on Thursday, June 27, 2024 in Mukilteo, Washington. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
2 killed in waterfront train crashes were near Mukilteo ‘quiet zone’

In June, two people were hit by trains on separate days near Mukilteo Boulevard. “These situations are incredibly tragic,” Everett’s mayor said.

Rob Plotnikoff takes a measurement as a part of the county's State of Our Waters survey at Tambark Creek in Bothell, Washington on Monday, July 1, 2024. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
Snohomish County stream team bushwhacks a path to healthier waterways

This summer, the crew of three will survey 40 sites for the State of Our Waters program. It’s science in locals’ backyards.

Logo for news use featuring the municipality of Mountlake Terrace in Snohomish County, Washington. 220118
4th suspect arrested after Mountlake Terrace home robbery

Police arrested Taievion Rogers, 19, on Tuesday. Prosecutors charged his three alleged accomplices in April.

A 10 acre parcel off of Highway 99, between 240th and 242nd Street Southwest that the city of Edmonds is currently in the process of acquiring on Monday, July 10, 2023 in Edmonds, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Edmonds ditches $37M Landmark public park project off Highway 99

The previous mayor envisioned parks and more in south Edmonds, in a historically neglected area. The new administration is battling budget woes.

Edmonds school official sworn in as Mount Vernon supe

Victor Vergara took his oath of office last week. He was assistant superintendent of equity and student success in Edmonds.

Former president Donald Trump is seen with a bloody ear as he is assisted off the stage during a campaign rally in Butler, Pa., on Saturday. MUST CREDIT: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post
Pops, screams and then blood: On the scene at the Trump rally shooting

Isaac Arnsdorf, Jabin Botsford | The Washington Post BUTLER, Pa. - The… Continue reading

Biden, Democrats, Republicans denounce shooting at Trump rally

Reaction pours in from government leaders

President Joe Biden delivers remarks in the Roosevelt Room at the White House in Washington, July 14, 2024.  Biden said he had demanded a national security review of what happened at Donald Trump’s rally and promised to share the results with the American people. (Yuri Gripas/The New York Times)
Biden: ‘We must unite as one nation’

FBI officials said they had no indication that the 20-year-old gunman was part of a larger plot

x
Man charged with hate crime in knife attack at Ezell’s in Edmonds

The suspect, 47, waved a knife at two workers while yelling about getting rid of “the Hispanics,” charging papers say.

Firefighters and EMTs with Sky Valley Fire tour Eagle Falls while on an observational trip on Wednesday, July 10, 2024, near Index, Washington. (Jordan Hansen / The Herald)
Beautiful but deadly: Drownings common at Eagle Falls, other local waters

Locals and firefighters are sounding the alarm as Eagle Falls and the Granite Falls Fish Ladder have claimed five lives this year.

A view of the south eastern area of the Lake Stevens that includes lakeshore and UGA that is a part of the city's annexation area on Thursday, Dec. 31, 2020 in Lake Stevens, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Lake Stevens fight to take over sewer district could end soon

The city and sewer district have been locked in a yearslong dispute. A judge could put an end to the stalemate this month.

Support local journalism

If you value local news, make a gift now to support the trusted journalism you get in The Daily Herald. Donations processed in this system are not tax deductible.