Men make it out of river after canoe flips

SUWANEE — Both men who fell out of a capsized canoe on the Chattahoochee River on Tuesday night were ultimately recovered, officials said, shaken but unharmed.

Emergency crews reported to the river near Settles Bridge Road in Suwanee at about 8:30 p.m., looking for a man last seen clinging to an overturned canoe, Gwinnett County Fire Department spokesman Capt. Tommy Rutledge said.

That man’s counterpart, who also fell out of the canoe when it capsized, was found shortly after the incident was reported, Rutledge said. He was able to pull himself to the bank on the Forsyth County side of the river.

Gwinnett’s swiftwater rescue team — along with members of the Forsyth County and Johns Creek fire departments and a Gwinnett police helicopter — scoured the river late into the night trying to find his partner.

By about 10:30 p.m., however, officials were able to confirm that the victim had continued floating downstream before pulling himself out of the river near Jones Bridge Park. From there, he “got a ride” to Medlock Bridge Park, where he made contact with authorities, Rutledge said.

“We’re very fortunate that both men were able to safely exit the river and were safe and accounted for,” Rutledge said.