$295K boat plus $110K in trucks equals $405K of flotsam in Indiana lake

Crew tries to rescue sinking wakeboat with a Wrangler and a Raptor, fails

Every boater has had bad days at the lake. The best — by which we mean, least damaging — outcome is when the badness involves just the boat. Still we've seen plenty of days go sour at the launch, some shiny tow vehicle losing purchase on the ramp and soon afloat, still attached to the trailer, gurgling. Even assuming a brand new loaded pickup and vapor lock, that's a $70,000 claim, tops. A boater at Indiana's Cedar Lake accidentally hit the home run of bad days, partially sinking a pricey Parvati wakeboat, then sinking a customized Wrangler when he tried to save the Parvati, then sinking a Ford F-150 Raptor when he tried to save the Jeep and the boat.

Parvati's AL26 starts at $295,000. If we conservatively put the lifted JKU Wrangler at $50,000 and the Raptor at $60,000, that's $110,000 in trucks. That makes for $405,000 in free-floating buoys in a lake that's 13.5 feet at its deepest. Perhaps worst of all for the gent in question, the Jeep belongs to his wife.

That gent appears to be Jeff Bianchi, based on Facebook comments and an Instagram page for Godzilla1350, and he appears to be well known in Cedar Lake. Going by his Insta feed, he got the Parvati in May, making this a terrible way to begin the summer. Seems Bianchi's house is sits beside the lake, with its own pier. Since no one captured the inciting incident, it's not clear what caused the previously lake-worthy AL26 to give into the lure of the deep. Various commenters have ruled out the drain plug, one suggesting the problem was a blown water intake hose

Supposedly, the crew tried to rescue the wakeboat various ways, including with another ski boat, none of which worked. Even so, we don't know how anyone involved arrived at the decision to go after a lake-faring vessel with a land-faring vessel. Whenever the story gets told, we feel the first mention of a Jeep is where we'd be ready to say, "Ah, there's your problem." The classic double-down maneuver of following one risky idea with another, in this case a Raptor, well, we've all been there. When the video narrator mentions a helicopter, she's referring to Bianchi's chopper, which stayed dry in its heliport.

The shame is that there was no winch on either truck. A $1,500 Warn with a generous length of synthetic rope could have kept either truck on its preferred terrain and pulled the 7,000-pound Parvati out without issue.    

The Indiana Conservation Police and The Cedar Lake Fire Department Marine Unit were notified, neither agency issuing public comment on the incident. 

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