911 Call Of Deadly Boating Accident Released

Posted at 5:55 PM, Feb 27, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-28 01:24:24-05

A newly released 911 call showed the hectic moments after a 50-year-old man fell off his boat and did not resurface at Percy Priest Lake.

Rescue officials said Kongmany Rajaphoumy was ejected from his boat after he made a sharp turn near the Hamilton Creek boat ramp.

During the 911 call, the caller said he had not seen the boater for about eight minutes. Another man, believed to be Rajaphoumy's friend, got on the phone frantically trying to explain what happened before he yelled several times,"I see him right there!"

However, what he saw turned out not to be Rajaphoumy. It would take the next nine hours before rescue crews found his body.

Rajaphoumy's death is a concern for the Office of Emergency Management and Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency.

The recent accident is the first boat-related death but already the third drowning in Davidson County this year.

There were a total of six drownings in Metro last year, according to Captain Mike Russell of the OEM.

"The risk of something happening increases because we have more people coming out when we have the warm weather," TWRA Officer Josh Landrum told NewsChannel 5. "With it being warm weather, we've had multiple boat accidents across the state."

Rescue officials are now stressing the importance of having a life jacket. Rajaphoumy was not wearing one when he fell. 

'Without a life jacket you're only going to be able to last in the water for less than a minute with temperatures in the high 40s or low 50s," Landrum added.

The TWRA used a remote operated vehicle with sonar to locate the boater's body. 

Officials say the boater took the boat back onto the water to run the motor after having mechanical issues.