Police Issue Reminder Of the Dangers of Lochs and Rivers After Weekend Incidents

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Police Scotland continues to remind the public of the dangers of lochs and rivers following a number of water related deaths across the weekend.

Officers were called around 5.55pm on Friday, 23 July, 2021 following the recovery of a body from the water at Balloch Country Park. The family of a 16-year-old man have been informed.

On Saturday, 24 July, around 4.30pm, police were called after reports of a concern for person in the water at Alexander Hamilton Memorial Park in Stonehouse. Emergency services attended and a male youth was recovered from water. He was pronounced dead at the scene and the family of an 11-year-old boy have been made aware.

Following a second incident reported on Saturday, officers attended at the water on Hazelbank, Lanark around 5.55pm following the report of a concern for person in the water. Emergency services attended and a body has been recovered from the river today, Sunday, 25 July. The family of a 13-year-old boy been made aware.

Around 6.40pm on Saturday, 24 July, police were called following concerns for people in the water near Pulpit Rock, Ardlui. A multi-agency operation took place and sadly, three people were pronounced dead at the scene. The family of a 39-year-old man, 29-year-old woman and 9-year-old boy have been made aware. A 7-year-old boy was taken by ambulance to the Royal Hospital for Children in Glasgow and is currently in intensive care.
Officers are keen to speak to a family who were in the area at the time of this incident and may be able to assist with enquiries.

Formal identification has still to take place in relation to each these incidents and full reports will be submitted to the Procurator Fiscal.

Assistant Chief Constable Mark Williams said: “The number of deaths in open water this weekend is hard to comprehend and my thoughts are with the families and loved ones of those affected.
“The warm weather can make open water swimming and paddling very inviting but it is extremely dangerous, even for the most experienced swimmers or supervised children. The conditions can change very quickly and there are often hidden risks like deeper water and strong currents.
“The message I want to send to everyone is exercise extreme caution. It is better to keep a safe distance from water if possible. Tragically, this weekend has highlighted that open water is very, very dangerous. If you see someone in the water and distressed call 999 immediately. Remember, you could get into difficulty yourself trying to help so please take care and seek help as soon as possible.”

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