York County Fire: Boater emergency call likely hoax

Posted at 11:12 PM, Jan 11, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-12 08:18:57-05

YORK Co., Va. – The York County Department of Fire and Life Safety said that a Friday night call for an overturned boat in the York River was likely fake.

Just after 8:30 p.m., the department, along with the York-Poquoson Sheriff’s Office, was dispatched to a report of an overturned boat with subjects in the water near the Coleman Bridge. The Virginia Marine Resources Commission and a vessel from Abingdon Volunteer Fire and Rescue also responded.

At the same time, the U.S. Coast Guard received a similar call and dispatched a marine vessel as well as a helicopter.

After a complete coordinated search of the river and the shoreline in the reported area, crews found nothing.

The York-Poquoson Sheriff’s Office investigated the call and said that it was suspicious, likely a “swatting”-type call where false information is reported in order to mobilize first responders. The call remains under investigation.