3 in critical condition after near-drownings Tuesday in Minneapolis

Three people were sent to the hospital after they nearly drowned Tuesday in Minneapolis.

According to authorities, at about 6 p.m., crews responded to a report of a drowning at Lake Nokomis. When they arrived, they found one victim, who was then transported to a local hospital in critical condition.

At about 7 p.m., Minneapolis Fire Department crews responded to a report of two people struggling in the water at Lake Bde Maka Ska. When crews arrived, they found one of the victims on the shore but struggling to breathe. The second victim was still missing and crews eventually found the person submerged. Crews got the victim in the boat, transported the victim to shore and began CPR.

Crews continued CPR in the ambulance. They were able to recover a pulse in the second victim by the time they reached the hospital. Both victims were listed in critical condition.

Assistant Fire Chief Bryan Tyner says precautions are especially needed now for swimmers with no lifeguards on duty at Minneapolis beaches.

In normal years, the hiring followed by training that 180 lifeguards need for the summer starts in February. But a spokesperson for Minneapolis Park and Recreation points out a variety of challenges during the pandemic prevented that process from starting.

In light of these incidents, the assistant park and rec superintendent presented a plan to the board on Wednesday to begin offering weekend lifeguard services starting June 20 from noon until 7 p.m. at the city’s three busiest beaches.

Then Thursday, July 2, daily lifeguard services will run from noon until 7 p.m. at a total of five beaches and an extra hour if temperatures are above 85 degrees.