Oxford Waterman Dies on the Job

A waterman died on his boat in Oxford, Md., over the Labor Day weekend.

Maryland Natural Resources Police (NRP) tells Bay Bulletin that the waterman was Stephen Robert Price, from Trappe, in Talbot County. Spokesperson Candy Thomson says police believe Price fell from his boat while working on fishing gear and drowned. He was 53 years old.

An autopsy is being done to determine his official cause of death.

The tragedy is one of six boating accidents over the holiday weekend in Maryland’s section of the Chesapeake Bay. None of the other five was life-threatening. Four accidents happened in the mid-Eastern Shore, one near Ocean City, and one in the Southern Bay.

Labor Day weekend accidents and deaths were higher than last year, when there were no boating fatalities and only five accidents.

Maryland NRP were on the water to enforce safe boating, and Thomson reports 405 tickets were written, five boaters were arrested for Operating Under the Influence, and officers made 1,180 boating safety inspections of vessels.

For those who may need a refresher, a boating safety inspection includes ensuring there’s a working life jacket on board for each passenger, and having a sound-producing device (like a whistle or horn), working navigational lights, a throwable flotation device, flares, and a fire extinguisher.

Saturday’s heavy rain did keep some boaters and anglers off the water.