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Tuber’s death sparks safety concerns along San Marcos River

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TWC News: Tuber’s death sparks safety concerns along San Marcos River
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A tuber died Sunday while floating the San Marcos River in Guadalupe County.

Twenty-three-year-old Eric Honeycutt of Round Rock was killed on the river near Martindale, just east of San Marcos. Authorities say he climbed a tree by the river, and fell, hitting his head.

Many people believe recreational traffic has increased on the San Marcos River this year because of New Braunfels' recent ban on disposable containers, the "can ban," on the Comal and Guadalupe rivers.

Homeowners along the river have seen more and more tourists and college students come to tube.

Some residents say they’re fed up with the trash left behind and the crowds that accompany it.

"I dreamed my whole life of living by the river, now it has gotten so bad the children can't be down by the river," Martindale Resident Chuck Meyer said. "It is bank-to-bank sometimes with hundreds and hundreds of kids. There’s no control over it. They are drunk. They are cursing, profanity. It is a pretty bad state right now."

After Sunday's death, area residents are raising questions about safety along the river.

John McComb has lived in the area for 11 years. He sees hundreds and hundreds of mostly college-aged kids float the river every weekend.

He says since New Braunfels’ can ban, it feels like the traffic on the river has doubled.

"I think that if this traffic continues to be at this magnitude, or increases, we are going to have a lot more law enforcement out here just to maintain sanity," McComb said.

McComb says it's not just more people, but the atmosphere that's changed as well. Residents we spoke to say there is no longer a family-friendly stretch of river.

A new can ban passed by San Marcos will prohibit alcohol in the parks along the river, but that ordinance won't go into effect until January 2013.

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