SARATOGA, N.Y. (NEWS10) – Sunday’s fatal boating accident on Saratoga Lake is an ongoing criminal investigation, according to a press release sent out by the Saratoga County Sheriff’s Office Tuesday morning.
The Sheriff’s Office says they’re awaiting toxicology reports, as well as other forensic evidence, as the investigation into the accident that killed 20-year-old Ian Gerber continues.
“It really hurts, to see such a terrible accident that accidentally could be preventable,” said Ralph Perrott, a local boater.
Officials say investigators are confident they’ve spoken with everyone involved in Sunday’s accident.
Police received reports of a man seriously injured after being struck by a boat around 7 p.m. on the Fourth of July. Sources say Gerber jumped from a boat into the lake, and was struck by another vessel and died from his injuries.
Following the incident, local boaters are stressing the importance of being safe on the water.
“It can be very, a lot of fun, good for families, but it also is something that needs to be highly respected,” Perrott said.
Perrott has been taking his boat onto Saratoga Lake for nearly a decade and says he’s seen incidents of people operating their boats recklessly.
“Sometimes people are not paying attention, they’re driving their boats and they’re trying to converse with people in the back, and they think just because the boat is going straight there’s no problem. They’re not looking out the windshield, and they’re not aware of things going on around them,” he said.
According to data from the State Park Police, there were 31 fatal boating accidents across New York State last year, including one in Saratoga County at Fish Creek Marina.
A person was also injured on Saratoga Lake, which saw six accidents in 2020.