(FOX 9) - Over the weekend there were four water-related deaths including one involving a boating accident. Just Sunday night, a 9-year-old child who was reported missing was found unresponsive in a Woodbury lake. The child was declared dead a short time later.
Another child was pulled from a pond at a park in Ham Lake Saturday evening. Anoka County Sheriff’s Office was called out to Lion’s Park where family members had pulled an unresponsive young child out of the water. The child was airlifted to Children’s Hospital in Minneapolis and their condition is unknown.
The incident was one of five water-related emergencies over the weekend. The first happened Friday on Big Sandy Lake in Aitkin County where police say a 34 year old man died in a boating accident.
Then on Saturday, authorities in Stearns County say an 18-year-old man died after jumping off of a dock into a quarry at Quarry Park.
Also on Saturday, family identified a 46-year-old man who died while swimming in the St. Croix River at William O’Brien State Park.
There have been at least 25 water-related deaths in Minnesota so far this year, five of them involving children.
A four-year-old died after drowning at Normandy Inn and Suites in Minneapolis on May 20.
On May 26, a five-year-old boy drowned in a pool at an apartment complex in Burnsville.
A 12-year old-boy died after drowning at North Commons Water Park in Minneapolis on June 4.
A nine-year-old boy died after drowning in a public pool in North Mankato on June 5.
On June 6, a 12-year-old boy was wading in the Mississippi River at Hidden Falls Park in St. Paul when he went underwater, drowned and died.
Alison Petri with Abbey’s Hope, a nonprofit that promotes water safety, said that while drownings are a tragedy they are often times preventable.
"I’m watching the drowning numbers rise, but each number isn’t a number it’s a person. When they’re swimming, as a parent, we need to put our cell phones down, we need to be in the water or ready to be in the water, constantly watching our kids."
On top of staying vigilant, tools like the proper life jacket can make a huge difference.
Petri says another important way to prevent drowning is, of course, learning how to become a strong swimmer. There is more information on swimming lessons and other resources at the Abbey’s Hope Charitable Foundation here.
For more information on free programs and scholarships for swimming lessons through the city of Minneapolis click here,
For information on programs through the YWCA click here.
For programs through the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office click here.