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San Diego man dies in Mission Bay boating accident

A man died after being pulled underwater and drowning in Mission Bay last weekend, San Diego police are reporting. According to witness reports, the fatal boating accident occurred while the man was being pulled on a tube-like water device behind a personal watercraft. He is believed to have been wearing a life jacket at the time of the tragic accident, but was not wearing it when lifeguards discovered his body, leading investigators to speculate that the flotation device may have been too small or improperly fastened.

According to police reports, the 29-year-old San Diego resident was riding on a water device known as a biscuit and being towed by a small watercraft. For reasons that are still unknown, the man became dislodged from the device and was pulled underwater.

About 10 minutes later, several people called 911 to report a man's body floating in the water near Ski Beach. Lifeguards pulled the man from the water and performed CPR. However, he was unresponsive, and was pronounced dead less than an hour later at a nearby hospital.

San Diego police are still investigating the cause of and circumstances surrounding the accident, they believe that equipment malfunctions may be at least partially responsible for the fatality. The floating device was found to be improperly inflated, with the inside part of the tube separated from a sheath-like outer layer. One other theory is that the man became entangled in the rope towing the floating device and was dragged and trapped underwater. The police investigation is ongoing.

Source: Sign On San Diego, "Inner-tube accident victim identified," Susan Shroder, 26 July 2011

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