Nonprofit: Number of drownings in Great Lakes jumps in 2021

Ohio
FILE - In this Aug. 5, 2018 file photo, beachgoers help Grand Haven Department of Public Safety officers form human chains to search for missing people in Lake Michigan at Grand Haven State Park in Grand Haven, Mich. More drownings have been reported in the Great Lakes so far in 2021 than by this time last year, prompting officials to urge swimmers to practice water safety measures. As of July 2, there were 32 drownings in the Great Lakes, compared to 25 as of July 4, 2020, according to data collected by the Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project. (Becky Vargo/The Tribune via AP,File)

FILE – In this Aug. 5, 2018 file photo, beachgoers help Grand Haven Department of Public Safety officers form human chains to search for missing people in Lake Michigan at Grand Haven State Park in Grand Haven, Mich. More drownings have been reported in the Great Lakes so far in 2021 than by this time last year, prompting officials to urge swimmers to practice water safety measures. As of July 2, there were 32 drownings in the Great Lakes, compared to 25 as of July 4, 2020, according to data collected by the Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project. (Becky Vargo/The Tribune via AP,File)

HOMEWOOD, Ill. (AP) — More people have drowned in the Great Lakes so far in 2021 than were reported by this time last year, prompting officials to urge swimmers to practice water safety measures.

Data collected by the Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project shows 32 people have drowned in the Great Lakes as of July 2 compared to 25 by early July in 2020.

The 2021 drownings include 15 in Lake Michigan, five in Lake Huron, six in Lake Erie and six in Lake Ontario.

The nonprofit is encouraging the “flip, float and follow” drowning survival strategy, which instructs swimmers caught in dangerous currents to prioritize floating and breathing before identifying an exit from the water.

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