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Man, 71, rescued from Somerset County canal after scooter mishap

Franklin Township Police Department
Franklin Township Police Department

FRANKLIN (Somerset) — Police say a 71-year-old man was rescued after his scooter propelled him into a local waterway Tuesday morning.

According to police, the incident happened around 11:30 when officers were called to the D&R Canal where they found the unidentified Scotch Plains man “clinging to a tree branch in chest-deep water.”

Officer Alex Sodbinow was part of the contingent that responded to the scene and worked with a civilian who was walking along the canal to get the man out of the water. Police say the man was on a “Jazzy” Scooter with a friend who was walking. The man, according to police tried to do a “K” turn to turn around. It is believed he was in the water for around 20 minutes before being pulled out.

“He believed that he pressed the reverse button, but had not, and he lunged forward, down the embankment and into the water.” The person the man was walking with stayed on the shore and helped direct police to his location. Both people were evaluated by EMS at the scene and both refused further medical care.

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Contact reporter Adam Hochron at 609-359-5326 or

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