Man dies after being hit by boat prop

A man was killed after his boat propeller hit him on Lake Havasu Sunday.

The San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department Colorado River Marine Enforcement Unit responded to the fatal boating accident in California Bay on the lake at approximately 12:49 pm.

The operator and 4 passengers left the Bridgewater Channel and headed south on Lake Havasu when the operator, Ismael Ortiz from Mesa, stopped the vessel and jumped into the water to cool off. The vessel drifted away from Ortiz due to the high winds and waves.

Ortiz was struggling when a female passenger placed the boat in reverse in attempt to get closer to Ortiz, according to law enforcement. The vessel was still in reverse when the female operator left the helm and attempted to assist Ortiz out of the water. Ortiz was struck by the moving propeller of the vessel and later succumbed to his injuries.

Alcohol does not appear to be a factor in the accident.


  1. Vanessa Parsons

    Prayers for his family. What a tragic accident.

  2. Amber Daffern

    Omg prayers. I’m sure she feels horrible

  3. Carrie Rasmussen

    So sad. Prayers for everyone involved ????

  4. Heath Humeumptewa

    Never reverse you come around!!!

  5. Marie Drum

    so prayers for everybody involved!

  6. Chrystal Scheer-Pentecost

    Omg that is horrible. 🙁 So sorry for him and his family.

  7. Rosie-Tina Rael-Burke

    Praying for all affected by this tragedy.

  8. Sandra Beebe

    My prayers and blessings.

  9. Trisha Salem-Dyer

    Horrible accident gosh, praying for the family

  10. Peggy Lande

    OMG that is so tragic. Prayers to all friends and family 🙁

  11. Kelly Ogilvie

    Wow how unbelievably tragic.

  12. Get training before operating a boat.
    Prayers to the man’s family.

  13. Tanya Batmani Sunstrum

    Bobbie Colon
    This must have been the boat we saw. So sad ????

  14. That happened several times while we lived there in the Keys. We were there for 11 years. Some people never learn. I know that woman will never forget this tradety.

  15. Andrea Burns

    Angela Boyle I just sent u that too? Sad

  16. Robin Schilling

    Terrible accident. Take this opportunity to teach family members how to drive the boat and pick up swimmers. Never reverse, driver must always keep,their eyes on the swimmer. And never get on the swim step unless the boat is turned off.

  17. Debra Cameron

    Celine Saldaña-Anderson yip there were moments for sure ????

  18. Korene Jones

    Gus Jones that’s not good!!

  19. Joe Somers

    Very, very sad. It’s a good idea to always have a throwable floating device tied to a line ready at all times just in case and it helps to practice a rescue with your family.
    We have made the mistake of not being prepared before, and we can only thank God for not loosing a life at that time. Prayers for the family

  20. Maria Pappas

    The woman who was driving the boat will never be the same and will have to live with this the rest of her life. Thoughts to his family and friends of this man. Sad and very tragic

  21. Michael Abel

    Joe Somers yes joe your right. Your required to have a type 4 throwable at all times. We see these type of avoidable accidents every year. It’s very sad and even worse when your the first responder trying to keep the weekend safe.

  22. Kirbie K Holmes

    Wes Holmes ughh this is so sad.

  23. Brian Gilbert

    So sad. We were there Sunday, the winds were definitely a problem all weekend. I can totally see how this happened. I’m pushing my wife to get more experience behind the helm because if these situations. I’m a very poor swimmer and stay very close to the boat, none the less, the boat can get away from you real quick with wind and currents. My condolences to his family.

  24. Jodi Slicker

    Robin Leafblad that’s probably where the fire boat was headed too ????

  25. Robin Schilling

    I just think about the stress level of everyone involved.

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