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Drownings in the Great Lakes projected to reach over 100 for 2022 year

The number of drownings in the Great Lakes are rising this summer and expected to reach over 100 before the year is out. As of today, 58 people had drowned in the Great Lakes in 2022. Last year at this time there were 45.

Dave Benjamin is co-founder and Executive Director of the National Drowning Prevention Alliance. He said it’s a natural reaction to try to help someone whose drowning, but a rescue has to be done safely.

“It's a knee jerk reaction, you jump right in the water, you make it out to the person, but then you didn't bring anything that floats, so you can't help them because a drowning person is going to be panics," said Benjamin. "And they may climb all over you and if you don't know how to do mixed martial arts in the water and how to control their body and bring them back to shore and have the physical endurance to do that; now you got two drowning victims.”

Benjamin said a drowning person can be submerged within one minute. And drowning doesn’t look like people often think.

“We are on trend to go over 100 drownings for 2022 based on our current statistics, and comparing it from this year to last year,” said Benjamin.

He said there is a shortage of lifeguards and beach flags and hazard signs are not being updated in real time.

Benjamin said when you're at the beach be aware if there are lifeguards. And parents should stay on the shoreline if kids are in the water, and have floatation devices nearby

Alexis Seeley is a journalism major from Macomb, MI. Alexis is going into her fourth year at Central Michigan University.