One dead in rafting-related incident on Ocoee River Saturday

One person died in a rafting incident Saturday on the Ocoee River in Polk County, Tennessee, but details of what happened and that person's identity have not been released by authorities.

Polk County Sheriff Steve Ross deferred comment on the death to the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency but officials with that agency said Tennessee State Parks was leading the death investigation, according to emailed responses to inquiries about the fatality on Monday.

(READ MORE: Ocoee Whitewater Center grounds, paths open to the public as TVA works on alert system)

Kim Schofinski, spokesperson for Tennessee State Parks, said Monday in an email she could only confirm there was a death of a person related to rafting and that the cause of death was undetermined, but incident details and the deceased victim's identity were not available. Tennessee State Parks is partly overseen by the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation.

(READ MORE: Witnesses say teenage girl that was rescued on Ocoee River was caught in rope, lost life jacket)

"Due to privacy laws, TDEC is unable to authorize any additional information about park guests or their use of state parks," Schofinski said.

A forensic autopsy has been ordered, Dr. David Darden, the medical examiner for Polk County, said Monday in a phone interview. Darden said he understood the victim was from out of state.

Contact Ben Benton at or 423-757-6569. Follow him on Twitter @BenBenton.