June 27, 2014 3:42 pm
Updated: June 27, 2014 8:38 pm

Possible drownings spark warnings about Alberta rivers


CALGARY- Officials are warning the public about dangerous waterways, after three people went missing while out on Alberta rivers.

37-year-old Derek Blackrider was last seen swimming in the Bow at around 5 p.m. on June 25, and a search is now underway. Two others have vanished over the past month, prompting the fire department to ask people to stay off the Bow River.

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“I think part of it is it’s just a lack of awareness with the temperature and the current,” says Batt. Chief John Cherweniuk from the CFD.

The Bow is running slightly higher than normal for this time of year, and the water is frigidly cold. It’s also muddy and murky, making it difficult to see dangers like branches or large rocks.

“There are hazards under the water now that weren’t there before,” Cherweniuk adds. “Sometimes they’re sticking out of the water a little bit, sometimes they’re under the water. The problem is with the hazards under the water…when the water is this dirty and turbid you can’t see those hazards.”

Those who do venture out onto waterways over the long weekend are reminded to wear life jackets.

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