National Drowning Prevention Alliance
     “Lifesaver of the Year” Award 2012 & 2020
        “Community Lifesaver” Award 2016 & 2018

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Michigan City Students heading to the beach

Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project
Dave Benjamin, Executive Director

Michigan City students heading to the beach

for Lake Michigan Water Safety Presentations

As Great Lakes drownings continue to rise in 2017 

GREAT LAKES, USA – The Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project (GLSRP) announces that it is partnering with the City of Michigan City, the Michigan City Fire Department, and Michigan City Parks and Recreation Department lifeguards to perform Lake Michigan water safety presentations for Barker Middle School students. All of the Michigan City school presentations in spring 2017 have been sponsored by ArcelorMittal.

The presentations will be performed at Washington Park Beach Monday through Wednesday, 9:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.  These presentations come as the beaches begin to prepare for summer visitors and Great Lakes drownings continue to rise.

The importance of Lake Michigan water safety education
“Water safety is extremely important in our area,” said Amy Hammon, Curriculum Coach at Barker Middle School. “Students do not realize the dangers of Lake Michigan.”

“Our school has had two tragedies last summer. It’s time to infuse pier and water safety into our curriculum each year and turn the tragedies into something positive and meaningful that will save lives.”

“The Michigan City Fire Department is always concerned about the safety of our personnel and the safety of the public,” stated Fire Chief Randy Novak. “Drownings are 100% preventable, and we are committed to preventing all drowning’s in Michigan City and adjacent communities.”

Great Lakes Drownings on the rise
The GLSRP is currently tracking 15 Great Lakes drownings in 2017. In 2016 the GLSRP tracked 99 Great Lakes drownings; 46 of those were in Lake Michigan plus 6 more Lake Michigan drowning accidents that were last listed in critical condition; up 84% over 2015’s 25 Lake Michigan drownings. Overall since 2010, the GLSRP has tracked over 551 Great Lakes drownings (Full statistics here).

“Most people do not know that drowning is one of the leading causes of accident and it continues to be a neglected public health issue [2015 WHO report].  We know that it needs to be part of the school curriculum and addressed year round,” said Dave Benjamin, GLSRP executive director.

“Water safety and drowning survival is not common sense. It’s a silent epidemic that gets very little proactive funding or attention. We believe that water safety and drowning survival is not rocket science,” Benjamin added. “It is simple bullet pointed information that is not being efficiently or effectively delivered.” 

The Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project
The City of Michigan City, Fire Department, and Parks and Recreation Department

Lake Michigan Water Safety Presentation

Washington Park Beach, Michigan City, IN

Monday, May 15, 2017 through Wednesday, May 17, 2017
9:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.
12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. 

Because drowning continues to be a neglected public health issue, so stay safe and have fun at the beach this summer!


The Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project, Inc. (GLSRP) is about saving lives.  It is a nonprofit 501c3 corporation that is a Chapter of the National Drowning Prevention Alliance (NDPA).  


  1. Tracks the Great Lakes drowning statistics (551+ drownings since 2010)
  2. Performs “Great Lakes Water Safety” presentations and trainings (Over 372 in 7 of the 8 Great Lakes states since 2011)
  3. Works with family and friends of Great Lakes drowning victims to advocate water safety.
  4. Hosts Open Water Surf Lifeguard Training and First Responder In-service Training

Mission: To eradicate drownings by being the leader of Great Lakes water safety by providing training, public preparedness, and public awareness.

Vision: Everyone in the Great Lakes region, nationwide and worldwide, is knowledgeable, engaged and proactive in water safety with an emphasis on the Great Lakes region.


  1. WGN Chicago’s Very Own segment, “Man makes water safety education his life’s passion”
  2. Dave Benjamin’s drowning accident and ‘Because I said I would’ water safety promise video
  3. John & Kathy Kocher’s “Gentle Giant” ‘Because I said I would promise video.

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Follow GLSRP on Twitter @ripcurrentsafeT