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Teen’s Body Recovered At Pineview Reservoir

HUNTSVILLE, Utah — The body of a 16-year-old boy who drowned while swimming with friends at Pineview Reservoir on Sunday has been recovered.

Officials said that’s now the fourth drowning at the lake this summer, making for an especially tough year.

That’s why local leaders and firefighters have pushed an effort to try and make sure it doesn’t happen again.

Firefighters, county commissioners and the Huntsville Mayor want to make loaner lifejackets available to anyone in the area.

“You get out, you start playing, and next thing you know, you start drifting out to above-head water,” Lt. Cortney Ryan with the Weber County Sheriff’s Office said of the seemingly calm water of Pineview’s Middle Inlet Beach.

Ryan said the cold waters and the wakes of passing boats all make a big difference.

As four teen boys tried to swim across the inlet Sunday, they decided to turn back halfway through. That’s when Ryan said things took a turn.

“(They) started coming back to the shore where they started from and that’s when he went under,” said Ryan.

Searchers used sonar, divers, kayaks, a drone and cadaver K-9s aboard a pontoon to help comb the inlet, before the teen’s body was recovered around 2:30 p.m. Monday.

“So, in the last four years, no drownings, and then this year, we’ve had four,” said Ryan.

Deputy Chief David Reed with the Weber Fire District said there is now an urgency from his department and local leaders.

“Two was shocking, but the third one was like, ‘Okay, we’ve got to do something.’ And then this one happened last night and it’s just, it’s really hard,” said Reed.   

He said even strong swimmers should wear a life jacket.

The idea now is to set up loaner stations where anyone can borrow one for free.

Reed said it will ultimately be up to the Forest Service, which manages the area, but they’re behind the idea, too.

“The peer pressure needs to come from family and friends to say, ‘Hey, don’t go out and do that. Put on a life vest.’ Or have someone with you in a boat that can pull you out,” said Reed.

These recoveries are tough on searchers and even tougher on the families.

“Seeing the emotional toll that it’s taken on the family, it’s not easy to deal with,” said Ryan. 

Reed said most could be prevented with a flotation device.

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