SAN ANGELO, TX — "That propeller is spinning at a high rate of speed and it can sever arms, sever legs, sever anything," said Lt. Game warden Ricky May, Texas Parks and Wild Life Department.
TPWL and SAPD responding to an accident on the 4th of July that left a man with a severed leg.
"They were hanging on the back of the boat and it had one of those swim platforms,” said May. “When they came in they were going slow in the no wake area so this all happened at a slow rate of speed."
May says to slow down the boat, the driver put it in reverse.
"The boat is now going in reverse so if you have the tendency for your legs to go behind, well when that happens it gets sucked in and he got sucked into the propeller," said May.
He says the motor changed directions and dragged in the victim [Jeremy Armenta's] limb. But he says it’s not an unusual accident, he says they often see people hanging off the front or back of boats, and while it's not safe it’s not exactly illegal either.
"We see people riding on the front of the bowels before, if they fall off you’re not going to be able to shut that motor down quick enough before they go right into it," said May. “It only takes a split second for something to go wrong and then they go right into that propeller."
Armenta spent the night in surgery and as of today lt. May says they have not recovered his leg from the water. Whether alcohol was involved is still being investigated.