Deaths mount in rag­ing rivers

Los Angeles Times - - THE NATION -

Rapidly melt­ing snow is send­ing Colorado’s rivers tum­bling from the moun­tains, so far claim­ing the lives of at least 11 peo­ple.

It’s also prompt­ing some raft­ing com­pa­nies to seek calmer rapids and stock ex­tra safety gear.

Last year, 17 peo­ple died in boating ac­ci­dents, sur­pass­ing Colorado’s av­er­age of 10 a year.

But the deaths haven’t damp­ened the at­trac­tion of the state’s white­wa­ter raft­ing in­dus­try, which drew about half a mil­lion peo­ple last year and had an eco­nomic im­pact of $ 160.1 mil­lion.

The deaths this year in­clude nine kayak­ers and rafters, a man tub­ing near Pue­blo and a fish­er­man swept away in Boul­der Creek.

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