Boise County Emergency Management works to remove deadly log jam on the Payette River

Posted at 2:00 PM, May 20, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-20 16:20:27-04

BANKS — Boise County Emergency Management is working to remove a deadly hazard on the South Fork of the Payette River.

A log jam is blocking the left side of the river just below Bronco Billy Rapid and has already claimed a kayak. Fortunately, the woman who was in the kayak safely made it to shore.

Monday afternoon, Boise County set the wood on fire using a gel accelerant that burns off before it reaches the water.

A representative from the County told us they don't expect the fire to burn all of the wood, but they hope to diminish the size of the log jam in an effort to find a solution to remove this hazard from the river.

The County also considered blowing up the log jam; however, they told us this would take a lengthy environmental study and they wanted to do something before someone dies in this hazard.

The County closed the Banks-Lowman Road down to one lane while they worked. The road should be fully re-opened at 4:30 p.m.

Log jams like this are one of the most dangerous hazards on the river because they act like spaghetti strainers--the water continues through, but a person or a boat would get stuck, which could lead to someone drowning if they accidentally floated into the hazard.

The South Fork of the Payette River is a popular recreation area for both kayakers and rafters.