Two men have drowned in B.C. since Saturday: RCMP

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With summer drawing to a close, police are reminding the public that chilly waters continue to be a danger after drownings on Vancouver Island and in southeastern B.C. over the past few days.

Sidney North Saanich RCMP were called to Coles Bay Provincial Park early Monday evening about a man in his 40’s reported to be struggling in the waters off the Pauquachin boat ramp.

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Two officers entered the water and tried to rescue him. With help from several bystanders, they got him out of the water and into the hands of paramedics and firefighters who tried first aid, but he died at the scene.

“Police believe that the man was trying to retrieve his boat which drifted from the boat launch,” then began struggling because of the cold waters, said Cpl. Andres Sanchez in a news release.

“We are deeply saddened by the outcome of this event and our thoughts and condolences are with the family and the community,” said Sanchez. “This incident should stand as a reminder to the public that even the strongest swimmer is at risk without proper flotation equipment in cold water.”

On Saturday, emergency crews were called to Windermere Lake in Invermere about a 26-year-old man who went under while swimming, failed to resurface and is presumed drowned.

“The man was on the lake with his friends, and was seen to be in distress while swimming,” said RCMP Cpl. James Grandy.

A search to locate the man’s body continued on Tuesday.

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