Cortland area firefighters rescue three kayakers on Tioughnioga River

Members of the City of Cortland Swift Boat Rescue Team helped bring three stranded kayakers to safety Saturday afternoon on the Tioughnioga River in Blodgett Mills. (Peter Blanchard/Cortland Voice)

BLODGETT MILLS, N.Y. — Three kayakers had their boats overturned as they attempted to navigate the breezy winds and steady current of the Tioughnioga River Saturday afternoon.

Shortly after 2 p.m., the Cortlandville Fire Department was dispatched to the hamlet of Blodgett Mills in the town of Cortlandville for a report of a kayak that overturned on the river, according to Cortlandville Fire Chief Gere Henry.

Three women were kayaking down the Tioughnioga River when their boats overturned, forcing them to swim their way onto a small island, Henry said. Moments later, two kayakers spotted the stranded boaters and notified authorities a short time later, he said.

The three kayakers, who asked not to be identified for this story, said it was their first time kayaking on the Tioughnioga River — and they don't plan on doing it again anytime soon.

Crews were able to secure two of the three kayaks successfully. As of 4 p.m., Marathon fire and rescue crew members were still working to secure the third kayak that became pinned underneath a tree in the middle of the river.