Milwaukee Fire Department works to prevent water tragedies

CREATED Jul 20, 2014

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MILWAUKEE -- At the Milwaukee Fire Department, members of the Dive Team constantly keep their gear in ready condition. 

The equipment was used on Saturday to recover a 14 year-old boy who drowned in the Menomonee River. According to the CDC - two children aged 14 years and younger die every day from drowning. 

This is something Lieutenant Peter Nycz calls a tragedy, but one that can be avoided with education and awareness.

"I think a big things is: know your surroundings. Know what kind of water you're getting into whether it be a lake or river."

Nycz says right now the big concern is hypothermia, thanks to frigid weather conditions this past winter. 

Nycz also says young swimmers should have the right equipment close. 

"Obviously if you can't swim, have a life jacket, have a PFD - a personal flotation device."

The MFD Dive Team also reccomends combating a fear of water by giving out swimming lessons early in life, and never swim alone.