UPDATE (6:23 a.m.) – According to Lieutenant Cortney Ryan, the 25-year-old man was taken off of life support and died. Officials have not yet released his name or a time of death.
WEBER COUNTY (ABC4) – A 25-year-old man was life-flighted to the hospital in critical condition after nearly drowning in the Cemetery Point area at Pineview Reservoir Sunday afternoon. If the incident turns fatal, it will be the state’s ninth drowning and third drowning at Pineview Reservoir this year.
Lt. Cortney Ryan with the Weber County Sheriff’s Office said they received the call around 1 p.m. after a man and several other people jumped into the water to save someone, believed to be the man’s younger brother. Everyone resurfaced, except for the man, prompting bystanders to jump in and retrieve him from the water.
Bystanders performed life-saving measures on the man until first responders arrived and took over. They detected a pulse and then life-flighted him to a nearby hospital in critical condition. The circumstances of this incident are similar to a drowning on June 20th, when a 37-year-old father went after his son in the water and drowned.
“We see this all too common where somebody goes into the water to rescue somebody else and then they become a victim of a drowning themselves,” said Lt. Ryan.
Back on May 15th, a 61-year-old man drowned at Pineview Reservoir. Officials said the common theme between these last three incidents is all of the individuals involved were not wearing a lifejacket.
“When temperatures are warm outside and you’re out in the sun all day, you don’t realize how much it drains your energy. To go from 90-degree temperatures into 70-degree water, that’s a shock to your body. Your body can cramp up and you can tire a lot faster than you would think.”
He said they’re seeing about 20,000 to 30,000 visitors per weekend up in the Ogden Valley area. Unfortunately, it’s also leading to an uptick in drownings too. Lt. Ryan said before this year, the last time they had a drowning was in 2017.
That’s why first responders are urging Utahns to take precautions in the water. Always wear a lifejacket, never head out on the water alone, always check water conditions before you go, and opt to use something like a stick to reach out to someone in need of help instead of jumping in to save them yourself.
“Nobody ever plans to go out on the water and have something like this happen. Take a few minutes to put on your lifejacket, your children’s lifejackets, and encourage others around you to do it too,” said Lt. Ryan.