Divers Will Halt Underwater Search of Lake Lanier for Missing Teen at Dark
Search for the 13-year-old boy missing after the deadly boating incident on Lake Lanier on Monday continues, but efforts of divers and use of sonar will be suspended overnight.
Officials with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources said the search for a 13-year-old boy missing after a deadly boating incident Monday at Lake Lanier will continue. Efforts involving divers and the use of sonar, however, were temporarily halted Tuesday night. Those efforts will resume on Wednesday morning.
In a press release, officials with the Georgia DNR said location efforts using the side-scan sonar would end at dark Tuesday, and the divers would have to cease activities by 7 p.m. However, DNR Wildlife Resources Division rangers were to continue to check the water in the Shoal Creek area through the night for any sign of the 13-year-old. Crews using side-scan sonar will begin again at daylight, with divers back in the water later Wednesday morning.
The search involves divers from agencies including Hall, Forsyth and Gwinnett counties, as well as DNR’s side-scan sonar, a device used to find and identify objects underwater. According to the release, searchers are dealing with several difficulties in their efforts to locate the teen, including depths in excess of 100 feet and underwater trees and low visibility. They also are not sure exactly where the collision occurred.
The teen was among 13 people on a pontoon boat that was hit by another boat at about 10:30 p.m. Monday on southern Lanier. His 9-year-old brother was also on the pontoon boat and was pronounced dead at the scene.
The operator of the other boat, Paul J. Bennett, 44, of Cumming, has been charged with Boating Under the Influence. He was reportedly released on bond Tuesday afternoon. Officials said the investigation is ongoing. Other charges are likely to follow.