Search underway for man missing on Willard Bay

Published: Friday, Aug. 23 2013 8:05 p.m. MDT

Friends react as search and rescue personnel look for a missing person who was on a personal watercraft at Willard Bay Friday, Aug. 23, 2013.

Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News

WILLARD, Box Elder County — Search and rescue crews are looking for a man missing at Willard Bay after his water craft was found riderless Friday.

Brigham Bradley, a 33-year-old Weber County sheriff's corrections officer, was off duty and riding a personal watercraft with friends when his machine tipped over and stalled, Utah State Parks Lt. Eric Stucki reported.

The group was about 300 yards off shore when Bradley went into the water. He managed to climb back onto the machine and seemed fine when his friends returned to the marina to pick up a rope to tow him in, Stucki said.

When they returned about 10 minutes later, they found the craft drifting about a half-mile from where they left it and Bradley was gone, Stucki said.

Bradley was not wearing a life jacket, Stucki said.

A Clinton resident, Bradley works as an EMT in the Weber County Jail medical unit.

The group reported Bradley missing about 2 p.m. Search teams from the Weber and Box Elder county sheriff's offices, along with Utah State Parks, were patrolling the lake by boat and on jet skis while a helicopter kept a lookout from the air Friday afternoon.

Windy weather, choppy water and murky conditions were complicating the search. Crews were relying heavily on radar technology.

Other teams were also searching the shoreline in case Bradley had been pushed ashore by the wind and waves, Stucki said.

Searchers ended their efforts about 8:30 p.m. when darkness fell, after carefully searching a 100-yard area where the jet ski was located. They will resume their search 7 a.m. Saturday with five boats and cadaver dogs.

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