Well, when you have to be revived by CPR, then I guess you can’t call it a “near drowning” but a real drowning. A man in his mid-50’s was found floating and lifeless in the middle of the Platte River near confluence park on Monday, Aug. 2nd. See the Denver Post Article here.
I walk the Platte most days, sometimes twice a day. Most of the summer the water level is pretty low, but right now it’s swollen. I see tubers and kayakers most afternoons. Tubers are pretty notorious for not wearing PFDs. My guess would be that only about 1/3 actually wear them. Most of the river can be pretty lazy, which is very deceiving. In fact, I’ve wondered if PFDs were really necessary. I’ve been convinced otherwise.
Just a few weeks ago, I watched a strong, twenty-something guy fall off his tube and get caught in a small hole. It looked like nothing, but the force kept pulling him down. After a full minute or more, he was able to find a way out. If he were caught in that same hole on a day like there when the water is high, he wouldn’t be able to get out on his own. So, enjoy the Platte, but wear your PFD!