I have a very good friend that won’t let her kids swim in lakes because she says if they ever start to drown you couldn’t find them to save them. She says she’s really bothered by how dark and muddy the water is and feels like it’s a greater drowning threat than pools.
And it does seem like this summer there have been a lot of stories of children and adults drowning or almost drowning in lakes.
For example, a 24-year-old is in grave condition after being pulled from Lake Lanier on Sunday. She spent 12 minutes submerged underwater!
A 6-year-old boy, the woman’s relative, also had to be rescued. But Hall County Fire Chief David Kimbrell said the boy was resuscitated and taken to Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta for evaluation.
The woman is in critical condition and the boy is in stable condition, Kimbrell said Monday morning.
On June 15, a 29-year-old Gainesville man drowned after diving off a bridge into Lake Lanier.
Three people, the woman and two men, were on a water scooter and they apparently hit a submerged tree stump, according to Summers and Tim Cavender of Cherokee County Fire and Emergency Services.
(See you never know what is under the lake water!)
The AJC ran a great story yesterday about the Department of Natural Resource officers who are charged with keeping our state’s lakes safe. Here’s some highlights from the story:
“Cpl. Eric Sanders and Boating Safety Ranger Mark Stephens are two of the state Department of Natural Resources officers tasked with maintaining safety on the 38,000-acre reservoir.”
“State DNR officers handle law enforcement on all of Georgia’s lakes.”
” ‘There’s about 200 bodies in Lanier that have never been found,’ Stephens said.”
“The complaints that officers dread the most are the 2 a.m. calls about missing persons. Finding a boater lost in the dark in the maze of coves is almost like finding a needle in a haystack.”
This last quote speaks to my friend’s worry that it’s much harder to search for missing or hurt swimmer in a dingy lake than in a clear pool.
The story also had some stats of lake accidents (I think these are for all Georgia lakes, not just Lanier):
What do you think: Are lakes more dangerous for kids to swim in? Does it worry you if they go swimming in lakes? Do you have different rules or watch more closely if you’re going to be in a lake? Or is my friend crazy?