One Dead, One Arrested After Boat Crash at Lake Oroville

According to Cal Fire Butte County there was a report of a boating accident on Lake Oroville in the area of West Branch Bridge on Sunday evening around 6:30 p.m.

Posted: May. 14, 2018 6:52 PM

Oroville, Calif.—According to Cal Fire Butte County there was a report of a boating accident on Lake Oroville in the area of West Branch Bridge on Sunday evening around 6:30 p.m.

First responders found that a boat had struck the shore in Dark Canyon area in the north side of the channel.

The boat crash ejected six people.

There were 30 total personnel assigned to the incident including six truck companies, and a helicopter.

Units arrived on scene within 25 minutes to find one victim dead in the water and five others injured.

Officials cannot discuss the extent of the injuries at this time, but say that they are significant.

The operator of the boat was 29-year-old Brandon Smith. He was arrested on BUI, Boating Under the Influence, but later released on bail.  He is being charged with involuntary manslaughter.

The ages of the people on the boat range from 17-years-old to 29-years-old.

The victim of the crash was 27-year-old Drew Gerken of the Paradise/Chico area.

Officials estimate the boat was going about 30 miles per hour when it crashed into the bank.

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