Man dies after being reported unconscious on Lake Minnetonka


A man died after becoming unconscious while on Lake Minnetonka Sunday night.

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Officials were called to Smith's Bay at 7:24 p.m. for a report of an adult man who was unconscious, the Hennepin County Sheriff's Office said in an email news release.

Emergency responders tried to resuscitate him, but he was pronounced dead at the scene.

The incident is under investigation, and the Hennepin County Medical Examiner will release the man's name and cause of death.

Smith's Bay is situated between Brown's Bay and Lafayette Bay, in the city of Orono. It's just north of Big Island, a popular destination for boaters and partiers during the summer months.

Last summer, emergency responders called for changes after having trouble reaching people who needed help over Fourth of July weekend. Law enforcement officials responded to 75 calls on the lake during that weekend, including 17 that involved alcohol-related medical calls, Lakeshore Weekly News reported.

Officials haven't said if Sunday's incident was related to alcohol or if the man had been to Big Island.

Boating fatalities

Last year, 18 people were killed in 16 different boating incidents, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.

Of the people who died, seven people were killed after falling overboard; six were killed after the boat capsized; one person died when a boat flipped after hitting a floating object; a child died from carbon monoxide poisoning; and one person was killed when they left the boat to pull it into shore.

Alcohol was listed as a factor in seven of the 16 incidents, or 44 percent, and life jackets were worn by only two of the victims, the DNR says.

The U.S. Coast Guard says operator inattention, operator inexperience, improper lookout, machinery failure and excessive speed were the top five primary contributing factors to boating accidents in 2015.

According to the agency's 2015 Recreational Boating Statistics, which was released last week, 626 people were killed in U.S. boating accidents last year.

The DNR has boating safety tips on its website, here.

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