HEMET – A Hemet woman who was killed in a weekend boating accident became entangled in a rope tied to a sinking vessel and was pulled underwater, San Bernardino sheriff’s deputies said today.
Tasha Turner, 30, was among seven people on a boat which sunk sometime after 6:30 p.m. Saturday near the Big River Park located just off the Colorado River, near the Arizona state line, according to Deputy William Poe.
The deputy said that Turner, boat operator Umberto Bagnara of Beaumont and five other passengers departed from the launch ramp at Big River Park to go tubing. However, the 19-foot vessel they were in “lost power and became swamped and started to sink,” Poe said.
Bagnara and five other passengers were able to swim away from the sinking vessel, but Turner was unable to free herself from a rope attached to the boat and was pulled beneath the water’s surface.
Dive teams located the boat Saturday evening, but strong currents and poor lighting conditions led crews to cancel further dive missions until the following morning, Poe said. Turner’s body was found after dive teams resumed their search about 7 a.m. Sunday.
The accident remains under investigation, and anyone with information was asked to call Poe at (760) 326-9200.