Two young people died on Sunday in Portugal after drowning in river beaches, reports CNN Portugal. A 13-year-old boy and an 18-year-old passed away in Cartaxo and Santa Comba Dao.
The 13-year-old boy died after drowning in the river Tejo in front of the Valada river beach. A drowning alert was set at 7:10 PM. Around half an hour later, the body was found by firefighters, and CPR was administered.
Unfortunately, the firefighters were unsuccessful, and the time of death occurred at around 8:15 PM.
A young man went missing in Santa Comba Dao at 3:45 PM on Sunday. At 9:30 PM, the body of the 18-year-old was found.
On Sunday, at least two people have gone missing on river beaches across mainland Portugal.
A 20-year-old went missing in the Peneda-Geres Park after diving in Canicada. Two of his friends dived into the river beach and were taken to Braga Hospital with mild injuries.
The search for the missing young person was stopped on Sunday night but recommenced on Monday morning.
According to NIT, in the first seven months of this year, 88 people died of drowning in beaches, pools, dams, and more, a record high in the last five years.
35 deaths occurred in the ocean and 31 in river beaches. Eight deaths were recorded in natural wells, six in dams, and three in private pools.
The Portuguese Federation of Lifeguards (FEPONS) told Expresso that the leading causes of drowning are not related to not being able to swim.
In reality, most drownings are caused by strong currents in the ocean and “excessive confidence from people” in rivers and dams.
Regarding rivers and dams seen in the country’s interior, Alexandre Tadeia of FEPONS says that people are overly confident outside of the ocean, believing it is safer, which is untrue.
He says, “they believe it is easier to swim a few meters, moving away from the shore. When they realize how far they are, they are too tired to swim back”. It is also much harder to float in river water.
In Portugal, drownings are the second cause of death for children up to five years old.