1 dead after jet ski accident in McCormick County

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Sunday, June 8, 2014

MCCORMICK, S.C. (WRDW) -- 45 year old Lisa Gepfert was enjoying time on the lake, but after an accident on her waverunner she never made it to shore.
Authorities say she was pulling into a cover when her jet ski hit a rock, and launched her into a tree. Officials also say friends gave her CPR, and a boat driving by called 911, but once officers got there, Gepfert was already gone.

"Our next step is to talk to the people she was with the day before and the day of to try to put pieces together what might have taken place," said DNR investigator Tony Spires.

Authorities say alcohol could be a factor. DNR reminds, if you're drinking on the water it may affect you faster than you think.

"It only takes a third of alcohol to put you under the influence of alcohol as it does if you were sitting in your house. So be aware of how much you do consume," said Spires.

Last year in South Carolina there were 33 boating fatalities. So far this year, there's been 8.

"A boating environment you have a lot of other stressers. You've got the spray coming from the boat, you've got the wind, you've got the movement of the water," said Spires.

DNR says the number one reason for water related accidents is improper look outs, and not being aware of potential danger.

"Whether it's another vessel or island. It may be a little bit submerged or rock out cropping you've got to keep proper look out at all times," said Spires.

DNR also says to make sure you know how your equipment works. They say first and foremost the key to staying safe is keeping your eyes on the water.

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