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Rescuers: Teen's foot nearly cut off in boating accident

By: Tim Johnston Email
By: Tim Johnston Email

ROWAN COUNTY, Ky. (WKYT) - Saturday was supposed to be a pleasant day out on Cave Run Lake, but for some it quickly turned into a nightmare.

"You hear about those things but man to see it in front of you," said Kory Kappes who was helping a friend that had broken down on the water, Saturday afternoon. That's when he noticed a group, roughly a hundred yards away, that was tubing and that's when he says something went terribly wrong.

"I (saw) a pontoon take off and the two girls that were on the tube, one of them falls off immediately and starts screaming and then the other one jumps off and they're yelling for help. It wasn't a 'I fell off and come get me,' it was a 'I really am hurt!'" described Kappes.

According to rescue crew personnel, a 16 year-old-girl, from West Virginia, got the tow rope to her tube caught around her foot, and when the boat took off her foot was ripped off and was left barely attached.

"I (saw) them circle back, I'm still a good ways away, and we weren't sure what had happened, but we knew it was bad. When they took off they left the tube in the water and they just came in as fast as they could," he recalled.

Several members of the Rowan County Rescue team could not comment on camera, but they said the teen's surgery was successful and she was even able to wiggle her toes on Sunday.

"It's one of those freak accidents. You know I've been boating on here since I was a kid and you hate to see it," said Kappes, "But that scream was enough for me. It was gut wrenching, I won't forget that for a while."

For this boater, the accident was an eye opener because he says he just bought an inner tube for the lake, but after what he saw he says he returned it the next day.

The teen's name has not been released, but she was flown to UK Hospital for treatment.

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