FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project
Dave Benjamin, Executive Director of Public Relations, 708-903-0166
Bob Pratt, Executive Director of Education, 517-643-2553
17 of those drownings occurred on Lake Michigan since June 6
GREAT LAKES, USA – The Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project (GLSRP) announces its current drowning statistics. To date in 2013, 44 people have drowned in the Great Lakes. Overall since 2010, 306 people have drowned in the Great Lakes (74 in 2010; 87 in 2011; and 101 in 2012). (Click here for full list of statistics.)
Of the 44 Great Lakes drownings, 40 were males and 4 were female. Of the 17 drownings that occurred in Lake Michigan, 16 were males and 1 was female.
While the Great Lakes have a short swimming season, it continues to have a high number of drownings each year. Matt Kocher, 15 of Tinley Park, IL and Gonzola Silva, 37, of Lafayette, IN have become the latest Great Lakes drowning victims. Since June 6, 17 people have drowned in Lake Michigan alone.
“The Great Lakes are beautiful, but they can be very dangerous, especially to swimmers,” said Dave Benjamin, executive director of the Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project. “Winds cause waves, waves cause dangerous currents, and the strength of those currents increase with the size of the waves.”
“It’s very important for people to know their swimming abilities and adhere when there are red flags flying at the beach. It’s also important to know the Signs of Drowning and the “Flip, Float, and Follow” Rip Current Survival Strategy.
The Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project, Inc. (GLSRP) is about saving lives. It is a nonprofit corporation that is a Chapter of the National Drowning Prevention Alliance (NDPA) that tracks drowning statistics, teaches “Water Safety Surf Rescue” classes, and leads the “Third Coast Ocean Force” rip current awareness campaign on the Great Lakes. Become a member of the Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project.
The GLSRP presented at the NDPA’s 12th Annual Symposium, March 14, 2013, in Ft. Lauderdale, FL. It presented at the 2nd International Rip Current Symposium Nov. 1st, 2012 in Sydney, Australia; the 2012 winner of the “Outstanding Service to the Great Lakes Community” award presented by the Dairyland Surf Classic; the 2011 “Lifesaver of the Year” award winner; and presented at the NDPA’s 11th Annual Symposium in San Diego, March 9, 2012.