The report of a kayaker in distress had rescue teams from three fire departments searching the Chattahoochee River for more than two hours Friday night, but it was likely an errant call.
“This appears to be a good intent call by witnesses who were concerned about the kayaker,” Gwinnett Fire Capt. Tommy Rutledge reported in an email. “There has been no indication of anyone in distress on the river and no reports of a kayaker missing.”
Rutledge said swift-water rescue crews from the Gwinnett, Roswell and Johns Creek fire departments searched the river at several points from around 9 p.m. until nearly 11 p.m. after the report of a possible emergency near Jones Bridge Park, on the Gwinnett side of the river. Gwinnett Boat-1 and a Gwinnett Police helicopter assisted, but also found no one in danger.
A caller thought the kayaker had missed his exit point at Jones Bridge.
“The [kayaker] went further downstream and remained in the area of the shoals before continuing down the river,” Rutledge reported. “It is believed that the man floated further downstream and may have exited the river in the Roswell area. The man was wearing a life-jacket and was not signaling for help according to bystanders.”
Rutledge said fog and swift water due to Buford Dam electricity generation complicated the search efforts. Crews arrived on scene at 8:46 p.m. and the search was ended at 10:59 p.m.