Share This Page

Families of two men who drowned in the Allegheny River settle their lawsuits

| Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2012, 2:36 p.m.

The families of two men who drowned in the Allegheny River near Harmar in 2010 have settled their lawsuit against the United States, the Army Corps of Engineers and a third man who survived the accident, lawyers for the plaintiffs and the survivor said Tuesday.

Gary Watson, 59, of North Huntingdon and Brian Abercrombie, 26, of California, Pa., drowned after their 16-foot boat overturned April 10, 2010, near Dam No. 3. Cale Watson of North Huntingdon, who was 30 at the time of the accident, was injured and rescued.

Stacey Valenta of North Huntingdon, representing the estate of her father, Gary Watson, and Ashley Abercrombie of California, Pa., wife of the late Brian Abercrombie, claimed the Corps of Engineers had failed to warn boaters of a recirculating current that draws boats toward the dam.

The Corps of Engineers uses buoys to warn boaters to stay out of the area. Officials said at the time of the accident that they had removed the buoys for the winter.

Valenta and Abercrombie sued Cale Watson because he was piloting the boat when it overturned, the lawsuit said.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.