Floating on inflatables is not recommended on Enderby’s Shuswap River right now. (Morning Star file photo)

Near drowning reported on Enderby’s Shuswap River

Inflatables still not recommended on the fast-flowing water

Too many rescues and close calls have officials warning locals and tourists about the dangers of floating Shuswap River in Enderby.

The Shuswap River Ambassadors report that the weekend (July 10-11) saw a near-drowning, rescue of a parent with small children, a lost group on the river resulting in RCMP being called and multiple advisories and assistance from waterfront owners and local residents.

“The weather may be hot and the water looks calm however there is a strong current and lots of natural hazards (sweepers/log jams),” the Ambassadors said. “Even with the number of signs, warning posts and River Ambassadors speaking with groups, people have still been on the river on inflatables.”

The above incidents reported to the Ambassadors over the weekend, “could have claimed lives.”

Tammy-Lynn Post lives in Enderby and the river is her backyard. She, too, is concerned that too many people are not heading advice.

“There have been a few rescues made in the past few days from people (mostly tourists) floating thinking it looks calm but it really is not. It is fast-moving and very dangerous still,” Post said.

The near-drowning reportedly involved someone’s tube getting snagged on something underwater and it started pulling them under, Post said.

“Their foot got tangled in the ropes attached to the floatie and between the gaps going under, she was screaming for help as she was going to drown and someone had to jump in to save her.”

Just the other day Post saw a huge tree go floating by, which could have taken out many floaters.

Instead, she urges those wanting to cool off to swim at the beach and stay close to shore. She suggests waiting until at least July 20 when the river is low enough, before floating.

“Like I tell my 15-year-old, better safe than sorry.”

READ MORE: Floaters urged to stay off Shuswap River in Enderby

READ MORE: North Okanagan boat safety checks underway

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Vernon Morning Star