Boat overturns in Lake Coeur d'Alene, men left clinging to decoy ducks

COEUR d'ALENE, Idaho - Kootenai County Sheriff’s Dive Rescue Team responded to a call of two men clinging to a floating log in Lake Coeur d’Alene, several hundred feet off of the North Idaho College beach.

They were joined by a Fire Rescue Boat, and quickly located the two men and administered treatment for mild hypothermia.

The two, identified as 25-year-old Dillon Szafas and 33-year-old Jeffery Fries, were reportedly duck hunting in Cougar Bay. Their boat was overloaded with gear, causing it to ride too low in the water – when waves started battering the boat, it overturned and sent the two men overboard.

They did not have their flotation devices on at the time, and were clinging to their floating duck decoys to stay above water.

Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office says they do not believe alcohol was a factor, but want to remind boaters to be aware of their boat’s legal weight limit, and to always wear a life jacket, especially in colder weather.