Following a series of six New Hampshire drowning incidents in the month of July, safety officers gathered in Concord on Tuesday to raise awareness about the dangers of swollen water bodies.
Officers from Marine Patrol, Fish and Game, the State Police and Concord Fire Department joined in a shaded area along the Merrimack River in an effort to promote water safety.
State Police says even a calm-looking river can have swiftly moving undercurrents.
But Captain Mark Armaganian warned despite apparently navigable surface waters, as seen in the Merrimack, they are not always indicative of swiftly moving undercurrents.
“With waterways looking as inviting as they do, we forget about the undercurrent that have led to many of these negative incidents.”
Officers say many people under estimate the conditions of the water and overestimate their swimming abilities.
Concord Fire Chief, Dan Andrus, also says it’s important to remain alert. He says drownings aren’t always dramatic and often occur quietly.
“If you could just be really quiet for a few seconds. (Silence) That is the sound of a child drowning.”
Officers urge all people to check currents, water depth and weather conditions before heading into the water. They also suggest people swim at state and local beaches where lifeguards are on duty.