Updated 05/29/2012 08:18 PM
Another tragedy at the Canajoharie Falls
A Schenectady man is dead after becoming the latest victim to the Canajoharie Fall's dangerous waters. Our Maria Valvanis has the details.
To view our videos, you need to
install Adobe Flash 9 or above. Install now.
Then come back here and refresh the page.
CANAJOHARIE, N.Y. -- Canajoharie Mayor Francis Avery said, "We realize the falls is a natural wonder, it is very beautiful. But people also need to realize the falls is very dangerous."
Less than two weeks since the last rescue, emergency crews were back at it Memorial Day, but this time, with less fortunate results.
Montgomery County Undersheriff Jeffery Smith said, "It was indicated to us that a gentleman had jumped into the pool of water at the bottom of the falls and was unable to re-surface. The initial search was to see if somebody could be saved, but it quickly turned into a recovery effort."
Ten rescue departments helped to pull 25-year-old Israel Vazquez's body from the water. Vazquez's death is the tragic result of trespassing into an area of Wintergreen Park village officials say they try so hard to patrol.
"The Village of Canajoharie has put signage all over the place, no swimming, no trespassing, because it is a very dangerous place," said Smith.
"The signage is there to try and save lives, not harass people," said Avery.
Violators are ticketed, facing up to $400 in fines. But because there are so many rescues there every year, Mayor Avery says he is exploring the idea of having residents be held responsible for the costs of those rescues.
"This costs a lot of money and there is a lot of man hours involved and the tax payer has to foot the bill. And these people were where they shouldn't be and I think it's time we decide to become more strict," said Avery.
Avery says he will present the idea at next week’s board meeting.
In the meantime, officials will continue to patrol the area in an effort to prevent any more tragedies.
"It seems every year or every other year there is a fatality or injury and it's unacceptable," said Smith.
Smith tells us three of the people that were with the victim at the time of the incident have been ticketed for ignoring signs and trespassing into the falls. The investigation is still ongoing and Smith tells us he does expect to ticket at least two more people.