ORLAND, Maine — A 52-year-old Orland man was killed Sunday afternoon while operating his personal watercraft on Toddy Pond.
Ross Staples of Orland was running his Kawasaki Jet Ski across Toddy Pond at 3:20 p.m. Sunday, but fell off his machine while traveling from the boat launch to a beach. Witnesses told game wardens from the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife that Staples, who was not wearing a life jacket, got back on and continued onward, but fell off again about 50 feet from shore and struggled to get back on the Jet Ski.
According to DIF&W, witnesses called 911, jumped into the water and eventually pulled Staples to shore. They then performed CPR on him before he was transported by boat to rescue personnel, who attempted to revive him without success. Staples was pronounced dead at the scene.
DIF&W public relations representative Caroline Hailey said it was unknown whether alcohol was a factor in the accident, or whether Staples was alone or with any friends or family at the time of the accident.
The incident is under investigation by the Maine Warden Service.