Multiple agencies assisted in rescuing five people from the Green River on Sunday night.
The rescue occurred after 9 p.m. Sunday from the Kummer Bridge on Enumclaw-Black Diamond Road, according to Puget Sound Fire, which was among agencies that assisted in the rescue.
None of the five people were injured, and agencies involved did not immediately provide details of the situation.
The bridge was closed in both directions while the five people were pulled from the water, Puget Sound Fire said on Twitter.
The agency did not immediately explain the circumstances of the rescue. In addition to Puget Sound Fire, Valley Regional Fire Authority, South King Fire and Rescue and Medic One assisted the Enumclaw Fire Department in the rescue.
With excessive heat forecast for the region this week, water safety experts are stressing the importance of preparedness and caution in and around water.
“It’s not what you see in the movies,” Derek VanDyke, education coordinator for the Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission Boating Program, has said. “A lot of drownings happen very quickly.”
Even really good swimmers risk drowning in Washington’s cold waters, he said.
Experts offer several tips for staying safe on the water this summer:
- Wear a life jacket and make sure it is properly fitted.
- Know your limits: Swimming in open water is harder than in a pool. Be cautious of sudden dropoffs in lakes and rivers, where swimmers can tire faster.
- Check river or stream conditions with the U.S. Geological Survey at 253-428-3600, Ext. 2635.
- Try to take two forms of communication, such as a cellphone, whistle, VHF radio or flares.
- Don’t drink alcohol and don’t smoke marijuana while boating.
- Don’t overload boats with more people than a vessel has capacity to accommodate.
- Check the weather and the marine forecast on the National Weather Service website, weather.gov/sew.
- If paddleboarding or kayaking, dress appropriately for cold water and wear brightly colored clothing; wear a personal locating device and carry a whistle.
- Let friends know your planned route and when you expect to be back. File a float plan with the Coast Guard, which has an app dedicated to the recreational boating community. Learn more about the app at uscg.mil/mobile/
- Write your name and contact information on small paddlecraft. The Coast Guard often finds derelict watercraft but can’t tell if someone is missing or a craft simply broke away from a dock.
- If you find yourself in trouble, get out of the water at any cost.
- If you’re a bystander, throw a struggling person something to cling to; even a cooler or a seat cushion could help.
- If you’re unable to help someone floundering in the water, be a good witness and provide a starting point for searchers.
Information from The Seattle Times archives was included in this report