Boater dies after accident, high water to blame


Reporter - Robert Bradfield
Photojournalist - Barry Stevenson
Web Editor - Mason Stevenson

MARSHALL COUNTY, Ky. - Marshall County Deputy Sheriff Jason Ivey spends a lot of time on the waters of Kentucky Lake.

"The Lake could change in a matter of moments," Ivey said.  And he knows the dangers high water brings.

"It could have huge trees floating down the river.  You wouldn't see until you're right up on it and it could be too late."

That's what Kentucky Fish and Wildlife officers say happened to Tim Clippard.  The 51-year-old's boat hit an underwater object, causing him to flip.

Experienced boaters, like Jerry Penrod, say it can be tough navigating the lake.

"It's basically the opposite of low water in the fall.  You get low water conditions.  You've got to say in the channels.  You get the high water, people think this can cut the corners," Pendrod said.

Ivey says boaters should take it slow if they are unsure of the area around them, because one decision could be the difference between life and death.

Funeral arrangements for Clippard are complete.

There will be two visitations.  The first will be Tuesday, May 14, from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m. at First Baptist Church in Jackson, Missouri.  The second visitation will be Wednesday, May 15, from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. at the same church.  His funeral will follow at the church.