MAHASKA COUNTY — Four kayakers are safe after an early-morning kayaking accident.

According to a news release from the Mahaska County Sheriff's Office, at around 1 a.m. on Tuesday, June 25, the Mahaska County Sheriff's Office received an emergency call about two capsized kayaks on the South Skunk River, north of Oskaloosa.

The four-person group entered the river on Hwy. 63 near the Oskaloosa waterworks plant around midnight. After the kayaks capsized, one kayaker swam to shore and walked to a neighboring farmhouse to call for help. Two of the kayakers arrived safely to the Glendale Access on Oxford Avenue. One kayaker was still unaccounted for.

The Oskaloosa and New Sharon Fire Departments were contacted to assist the Mahaska County Sheriff's Office with the call. Both fire departments launched search and rescue boats on the river in search of the missing kayaker.

The kayaker was found safely on land at around 3:15 a.m.

In addition to the two fire departments, the Sheriff's Office was assisted by members of the Oskaloosa Police Department, the Mahaska County Dispatch Center and the Mahaska Health Partnership ambulance service.

The Sheriff's Office wanted to remind all boaters, canoers and kayakers to be extra safe with the high river waters this year. They are encouraged to only boat during daylight hours, always use life jackets and avoid the use of alcohol while on the water.

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