Tragedy struck a family visiting from Calgary on Monday when a 12-year-old girl drowned in Osoyoos Lake. She has now been identified as Naziha Mohammed.
She was camping with her family at Swiws (Haynes Point) provincial lake campground and was walking in the shallow waters with her friend along the sand spit at the end of Swiws Point at about 7:30 p.m. RCMP say a few waves caused Mohammed to lose her footing and slip into the deeper water.
Her friend grabbed her hand and held it but the Mohammed slipped further into the water and her friend could no longer hold on.
RCMP say Mohammed did not know how to swim and was not wearing a life jacket. She slipped under the water and did not surface.
A number of people on shore, as well as local boaters, quickly jumped in to help and frantically searched the water. Four RCMP members, along with the Osoyoos Fire Department and three helicopters that had been in the area working the fires also joined the search.
After nearly 40 minutes of searching, an employee of the campground found Mohammed in about 10 feet of water. He rushed her to the police boat and she was taken to shore. She was then rushed to South Okanagan General Hospital in Oliver but was pronounced deceased shortly after arrival.
The BC Coroners Service and RCMP continue to investigate this death.
RCMP say this is the second drowning in Osoyoos Lake this year. On June 28, Samen Pirzadeh-Tabaei-Zavareh, a 34-year-old man from North Vancouver drowned after falling off his Seadoo. His body was found and recovered on Aug. 16 by Ralston and Associates from Boise, Idaho.
They use side-scan sonar to search for drowning victims and two cadaver dogs from California assisted in narrowing down that search.
RCMP say Pirzadeh-Tabaei-Zavareh was not wearing a life jacket.
Watch: This viewer video shows the search of Osoyoos Lake Monday after the 12-year-old Calgary girl slipped into the water.