National Drowning Prevention Alliance
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        “Community Lifesaver” Award 2016 & 2018

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Great Lakes Drownings Decrease Rescues Increase

Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project
Dave Benjamin, Executive Director of Public Relations, 708-903-0166
Bob Pratt, Executive Director of Education, 517-643-2553

Great Lakes Drowning Decrease as Rescues Increase 

Lake Michigan most improved 

05/30 High School Water Safety Class in New Buffalo, MI 

06/01 Public Water Safety Class in Gary, IN 

GREAT LAKES, USA –The Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project (GLSRP) announces drowning decreases and rescue increases.  Lake Michigan us usually leading the drowning stats, but this year it has zero drowning’s and is leading the rescue stats.

DROWNING DECREASES – TO date in 2013, 12 people have drowned in the Great Lakes; eight less than this time last year (Full Statistics).

Here are the numbers of drowning’s by lake for 2013:
Lake Michigan – Zero deaths
Lake Huron – One death
Lake Ontario – Two deaths
Lake Superior – Three deaths
Lake Erie – Six deaths
Three people died when snowmobiles fell through ice, two were kayaking and one was in a vehicle that went into the water.

RESCUE INCREASES – To date in 2013, there have been at least 42 rescues.  Those rescued included snowmobilers, ice fishermen, sail boaters, kayakers, and one kite surfer. Each person rescued could have easily become a drowning statistic.

The number of Great Lakes drowning deaths are down from last year, possibly because of the colder spring.

42 Great Lakes Rescues to date in 2013

(Plus 4 dogs and 1 deer rescue)

04/02  1 rescued, kayaking, Harbor Springs, MI
04/07  8 rescued, ice fishing, rescued from four different spots near Green Bay.
04/19  1 rescued, boat capsized, Algoma Harbor, Algoma, WI
04/30  1 rescued, kite boarded tangle in lines, South Haven’s north beach, MI
05/06  1 rescued, kayaker capsized, Near South Side, 300 block of North Breakwater Access
05/11  1 rescued, kayaker with broken paddle, near Pastrick Marina in East Chicago, Ind.
05/13  2 rescued, canoe adrift in strong winds, Lake St. Clair
05/15  3 rescued whose boat ran aground, Little Sturgeon Bay, WI
05/17  2 rescued after sailboat capsized, Jackson Park, at 65th Street, Chicago, IL
05/27  1 rescued Milwaukee Lakefront

04/21  2 rescued from shelf ice 

03/04  1 rescued airboat capsized, Saginaw Bay
05/07  1 rescued after sailboat capsized, off 6072 Port Austin Road
05/16  2 rescued after sailboat capsized, a mile off from Canatara Park
05/28 1 kayaker rescued 

01/16  1 rescued, duck hunter’s kayak capsized, Hanford Bay, Town of Hanover
05/11  3 rescued after boat takes on water North of Vermillion, Ohio
05/20  2 rescued – a 20-foot recreational vessel was taking water near the Erie Basin Marina
05/26  1 rescued Vermillion, OH, 17 year old swimming off of Main Street Beach
05/29 2 rescued – boat taking on water

04/09  3 fishermen rescued, capsized boat, Allegany County, Youngstown, NY
05/15  2 rescued after sailboat capsized, near Port Credit

01/03 Lake Michigan dog had fallen through the ice about 70 feet from shore.
02/06 Lake Ontario dog stuck in ice flow
02/23 Lake Michigan dog rescued by Chicago kayaker
04/30 Lake Ontario Blind Dog rescued
05/21 Lake Huron Deer Rescue 


New Buffalo, MI – The Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project (GLSRP) will be presenting to approximately 400 New Buffalo high school and junior high students and faculty, Thursday, May 30, 9:00 a.m., 1112 E. Clay St., New Buffalo, MI 49117.

Gary, INThe Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project (GLSRP) announces that drowning survivor, Evelyn Hernandez, is hosting a “Great Lakes Water Safety” class in partnership with the Gary Department of Public Parks, Saturday, June 1, 9:00 a.m. at the beautifully restored Marquette Park Pavilion, Gary, IN.


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 “Great Lakes Water Safety” 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.