As we head into the beginning of summer, more and more people will be venturing out to area provincial parks, lakes, and rivers to beat the heat and cool down.  

The RCMP wants to remind swimmers to be safe this summer.

RCMP Staff Sargent, Chad McLeod is the province's Traffic Services Section, North District Commander, he says to avoid mixing alcohol and swimming this summer.  

“It tends to lead people to make riskier choices, so eliminate that choice, and do not try to go into the water after you’ve had a lot to drink or any cannabis,” says Staff Sargent McLeod.  

The weather throughout the province can shift in an instant, and before you know it you could be swept away.  

“Regardless of how good of a swimmer you think you are, if you get into a bad situation and the water is still fairly cold in most places, this time of the year hypothermia can take over and you can go missing very quickly,” adds Staff Sargent McLeod.  

Earlier in June,  a 17-year-old was swept away at Barney’s Beach and was missing for four days. Following a lengthy search, the male was found deceased.  

On June 26, a 19-year-old was found deceased in the water on a public beach in Buena Vista on Last Mountain Lake.  

Staff Sargent McLeod notes, that if you do decide to venture into the water make sure to swim in pairs, and tell family or friends where you will be swimming. For parents that have children in the water make sure to have direct eye contact or be in the water with the children.  

The Canadian Red Cross says to be cautious to swim in currents. They say if you become caught in a river current roll onto your back and go downstream feet first to avoid hitting obstacles headfirst. When you are out of the strongest part of the current, swim on a forward angle toward shore.