Emergency crews responded to the Grand River in front of the waterfront shops at about 11 a.m. The youth and his mother were out of the water when they arrived.
The mother said that she and her son were riding bikes down the hill between the Riverfront Shops and Snug Harbor. She said she told the special needs youth to use the brakes on his adult tricycle, but he panicked, didn’t apply them hard enough and flew off the boardwalk into the channel.
She noted that the boy does triathlons for special olympics and was able to swim to a nearby ladder and get out of the water.
The customized tricycle sank to the bottom.
The woman said she went into the water to retrieve her son’s sandals.
Police said the water is at least 15-20 feet deep in the area.
They said it was possible that Grand Haven Public Works employees would come down with a grappling hook later and try to retrieve the tricycle.