A boy who was rescued from the Cherry Creek Reservoir has died from the incident, marking the fourteenth fatality related to Colorado water attractions in 2017.
The first fatality occurred when a man died during a commercial rafting expedition on the Arkansas River on April 30, a few weeks later the second death occurred when Bryan Weim was carried away by waters on the popular Western Colorado site Potholes. Two days after Weim’s death Elyssa McReight, 32, lost her life on a rafting trip in Eagle County on a portion of upper Colorado River known as Boneyard Rapids.
Nine more days saw two more fatalities. Maximillian Lopez passed away while tubing and 64-year old William McHarg of Severance lost his life when his raft flipped over on June 27. The number has not slowed down and June 27 saw three fatalities alone. Until the death of the boy, the most recent fatality was July 16 when a resident of New Mexico fell out of his tube at Smelter Rapid near Durango.
Several other Colorado residents have lost their lives on Colorado lakes, rivers, and streams throughout the 2017 rafting and outdoor recreation season. Before hitting any of Colorado’s waterways take the proper steps to ensure the safety of yourself and your family. Let’s review some tips on keeping safe.
Tips for Keeping Safe on Colorado Waters
- Monitor small children closely
- Don’t attempt anything outside your skill level
- Wear proper safety gear when in the water
- Stay away from the water if you’re intoxicated
- Don’t venture into unknown waters
- Never venture into the water alone
- Require small children or poor swimmers to always wear approved personal flotation devices (PFDs)
- Never venture into white waters without proper equipment and personnel
Only deal with reputable rafting companies and water recreation companies. Be certain that any organizations you book an excursion with are properly invested in safety, have the proper crews and equipment, and have the online reputation to prove it. You can investigate any potential companies online before booking. Look for positive reviews from multiple sources, and a registration with the Local Better Business Bureau says many positive things about the company.
Colorado has seen too many water-related fatalities this year so don’t let yourself become a statistic. Practice proper safety procedures near water and only deal with reputable outdoor water-based recreation companies.