Rescue Abandonment

by Commodore Ken Heaphy

National Canoe Safety Patrol

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New Jersey News Latest river victim from South America

Tuesday, August 11, 2002

We know why !



PHILLIPSBURG -- The man who drowned Sunday night, August 11,2002 in the Delaware River was identified Monday as Ramos Santiago.


Santiago, 38, is a native of Colombia, South America, according to Warren County Medical Examiner Isidore Mihalakis. Mihalakis said he conducted an autopsy early Monday. He said there was nothing unusual about the death, such as the presence of drugs or alcohol.


Phillipsburg police said they do not know why Santiago was in the Phillipsburg area. An investigation into the incident is ongoing, police said. Police said they're still attempting to contact Santiago's relatives in South America.



This avoidable death was caused by an incomplete rescue known as recue abandonment. This tragic death is currently used as a case study for the National Canoe Safety Patrol in our annual training. This avoidable death was caused by failure of the second rule of river rescue safety,

"Due No Further Harm".