Teenager becomes sixth person to die in water during heatwave


Click to follow
The Independent Online

A 15-year-old boy who died in a reservoir was named yesterday as the sixth person to lose their life while entering water during the weekend heatwave.

The body of Thomas Barton, from Coppull in Lancashire, was found in Big Lodge Water at Yarrow Valley Country Park in Chorley late on Sunday night. Police had been called at 7.40pm and were joined by the fire service and an ambulance crew, as well as a mountain rescue team and park rangers. His body was recovered shortly before 11pm.

It was reported that four of his friends were found stranded on a floating jetty by the emergency services when they arrived. Detective Inspector Jo Keay said: "Despite the best efforts of all the people involved in the rescue operation, sadly a young boy has lost his life – and it goes to illustrate the dangers of swimming in open water. This is a tragic accident and our thoughts are with Thomas's family at this incredibly sad time."

Thomas's death followed the drowning of a 32-year-old man from Surrey who went into the sea at West Wittering beach to rescue two children in a rubber ring on Saturday.

Three others died over the weekend while trying to enjoy cooling off from the high temperatures.

Nicholas Smith, 23, was pulled from the water in Linn Park in Glasgow and died later in hospital, after 15-year-old Hussain Mohammed drowned after jumping into the River Thames from a bridge in Oxford. A 21-year-old died in Caldecotte Lake on Saturday in Milton Keynes, the same town where two boys were injured trying to make a waterslide out of old drainage pipes.

In Ireland, Patrick Smyth died after getting into difficulty while swimming at a disused quarry at Ballykelly, near Monasterevin in County Kildare.