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Blackfoot man drowns in Portneuf River after boat tips over


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FORT HALL — A 73-year-old Blackfoot man drowned Thursday morning after his drift boat tipped over in the Portneuf River.

David E. Roberts is the man officials say died after getting a 911 call just before 10 a.m. The Power County Sheriff’s Office reports getting the 911 call about the man drowning in the river east of American Falls near Tank Farm and Siphon Roads. The Shoshone Bannock Tribes report it happened within the Fort Hall reservation.

Roberts and another man were fishing on the Portneuf River in the drift boat and it filled up with water. When the boat eventually capsized, both fishermen went into the water and were not wearing life jackets.

The man with Roberts was able to swim to shore, but Roberts did not make it. Officials found his body around 12:30 p.m. under river debris.

The Power County Sheriff’s Office and the Bannock County Sheriff’s Office rushed to the scene with the help of Power County EMS, Power County Search and Rescue Dive Team, Bannock County Search and Rescue, Fort Hall Police Department, and Fort Hall Fire and EMS. will provide updates when they become available.