Two men have drowned in the Delaware River sinceSunday, making the past month a particularly deadly one in the Delaware WaterGap National Recreation Area.
Three men have drowned during this time. None were wearing life jackets.
New York City man dies while tubing
Authorities say a New York City man died on July 19 after falling off a tube he was using to float down the Delaware River. The Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area said that the 51-year-old man, who was not wearing a life jacket, was with a group of people floating on tubes in the river in Pike County but became separated from them, fell into the water and went under.
Emergency crews were called to the area of Tocks Island in Warren County, N.J., about six miles north of Delaware Water Gap and the Interstate 80 toll bridge.Rangers and a Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission officer said the victim was found on the Pennsylvania side of the river in Smithfield Township, Monroe County.
Members of the man’s group and others brought him to the shore and began CPR,and efforts to revive him continued as he was moved to a park service boat and taken to Lehigh Valley Hospital-Pocono,where he was pronounced dead.The Monroe County coroner’s office didn’t immediately release his name pending notification of hisfamily.
Marshalls Creek man dies while swimming
A 32-year-old man from Marshalls Creek drowned in the Delaware River while swimming near Bushkill Access.At 6:17 p.m. on July 20, the emergency communications center at Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area received a call from Monroe County Control Center reporting a swimmer in distress,and that several children were also in the water. A few minutes later the reporting party stated that the everyone was out of the water.
When park rangers and rescue crews from Bushkill Volunteer Fire Department Station 24 arrived on the scene at 6:23 p.m., bystanders were conducting CPR.The victim was transferred to Bushkill Emergency Corps Advanced Life Support unit and then taken to Lehigh Valley Hospital-Pocono, where he was declared dead by hospital medical staff.The victim’s name is not being released at this time pending notification of next of kin and family members.
First drowning claims life of 20-year-old
The first drowning occurred on June 21, when 20-year-old Jeury Arias Castillo from Paterson, N.J., drowned while attempting to swim across the Delaware River at Milford Beach, which has no lifeguards this season. The National Park Service says they were unable to recruit lifeguards because of COVID-19. Signs posted at the beach warn swimmers about the lack of lifeguards.
The park service reminds all river users to wear a properly fitted, U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jacket while swimming, floating, fishing,or boating on or in the Delaware River.
“The river current is strong and swift, despite calm appearances in some areas, and the depth can change suddenly,often going from knee deep to over your head in a single step,” said Chief RangerEric Lisnik. “Wearing a life jacket at all times is one simple thing that a person can do to ensure a fun and safe day on, and in, the river.”