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Search Operations still underway for Winona man

WINONA, Minn. (FOX 47) – Multiple agencies are helping Winona County Dive and Rescue find a man who is missing after he fell off a boat Friday evening.

Winona County Dispatch received a call a little after 5 p.m. Friday of a boat in distress at the Prairie Island Spillway. When crews arrived one occupant had been rescued by a passing boat, but one man was still missing.

The two on board were a 63-year-old man and his future son-in-law. The two men were fishing when they came to a spillway. A spillway is a passage for surplus of water, dams usually are designed with one.

They tried to go alongside the spillway when the fast and high water caused their boat to go over it and flipped the boat. The son-in-law surfaced, but the 63-year-old man did not.

Crews are still out on the river using different techniques to give them a mark where the man could be than they will have divers go in to look for the man.

Winona County Dive and Rescue Captain Steve Buswell

Winona County Dive and Rescue Captain Steve Buswell says they are now shifting their efforts, “Anything over for sure six minutes of lack of oxygen the possibility of coming back is gonna be with brain damage and stuff, at 5 o’clock today (Saturday) or right around 5:00- 5:30 it’s gonna be 24 hours so were clearly right now in what we are calling recovery mode.”

Capt. Buswell said he cannot stress enough the importance of wearing a life jacket anytime you’re in a body of water.

Search crews were able to find the boat and the men’s fishing gear.

The Winona County Sheriff’s office have closed Prairie Island boat landing Saturday morning to give crews room to work.

Ubah Ali

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