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Body of missing swimmer recovered from American River in Placer County

Officials stress use of life jackets

Drowning Accident Rescue Team volunteer Leslie Robinson encourages the use of life jackets for children and adults when along the American and Sacramento rivers.
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Drowning Accident Rescue Team volunteer Leslie Robinson encourages the use of life jackets for children and adults when along the American and Sacramento rivers.

The body of a 20-year-old man has been recovered from the north fork of the American River after he disappeared while swimming near the Foresthill Bridge.

Mike Howard, Auburn sector superintendent for California State Parks, said a call was received about 11:30 a.m. Tuesday reporting a missing swimmer. State parks rangers responded, along with a California Highway Patrol helicopter and Placer County sheriff’s dive team, to the area of Clarks Hole, where the man had been swimming with five friends.

Howard said the helicopter crew located the man’s body submerged in about 10 feet of water about 300 yards downstream from where he disappeared. Divers recovered the body.

The man’s name has not been released pending notification of family. Howard said he was a resident of the Sacramento region.

Howard cautioned people against trying to swim across the river.

“It’s colder and faster than people tend to estimate it is,” he said. “Despite the hot temperatures, the rivers are still powerful and cold.”

Anyone who ventures into the river, he said, they should wear a life jacket. The man who drowned Tuesday was not wearing a life jacket, Howard said.

UC Berkeley current oceanographer Francis Smith explains rip currents, how to avoid them, and how to escape them if pulled in.

Cathy Locke: 916-321-5287, @lockecathy

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