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updated: 6/19/2011 5:42 PM

Algonquin man killed when boat strikes Fox River pier

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A 45-year-old Algonquin man was found dead in the Fox River early Sunday morning after Algonquin-Lake in the Hills Fire Protection District responded to a report of an overturned boat resting halfway up on a pier.

First responders arrived on scene in the 10300 block of North River Road in Algonquin just before 4:30 a.m., according to a release issued by the district. Crews found Michael Cherbak in the water 10 feet from a 21-foot Cutty Cabin boat.

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The Illinois Department of Conservation is taking the lead in investigating the accident. Illinois Department of Conservation Police Sgt. Brett Scroggins said the boat hit the pier while traveling along river about 4 a.m. Sunday and likely flipped because of the angle of the collision.

"A witness heard a boat and what sounded like an accident or collision," Scroggins said.

Fire district personnel searched the water around the boat and also used sonar scanning equipment to look for anyone else who may have been involved in the accident, but found no additional victims.

Fire crews remained at the pier until 6:30 a.m.

The Cary Fire Department assisted by supplying a boat and personnel for the effort.

An autopsy will be conducted Monday afternoon, which will give officials more information about potential contributing factors to the accident, Scroggins said. Authorities also will perform toxicology tests.

Police recovered the boat from the pier Sunday and will examine it for a damage assessment.

"We'll determine as best we can, with the information we have, what were the causes and contributing factors," Scroggins said.

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