Great Lakes drownings exceed 100 deaths

Great Lakes drownings exceeded a hundred deaths this year after two more people died swimming in Lake Michigan last weekend.

The total number of drownings in 2022 is now at 101 with 43 cases reported in Lake Michigan. 

The Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project said the two additional drownings continued the region's "record pace" of drownings. So far, 1,148 people have drowned since 2010.

The deaths happened in Michigan City, Indiana and in Frankfort, Michigan and included a kite surfer and professional paddler. The GLSRP said both drownings are the first to be counted in the "Extreme Watersports Category."

There have also been 21 drownings in Ontario, 19 in Lake Erie, 12 in Lake Huron, and 6 in Lake Superior.

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In an effort to reduce the number of drownings, the GLSRP says it will be ramping up the number of water safety presentations in the coming seasons. 

"The pandemic in 2020 brought our school presentations to a standstill," said Dave Benjamin, GLSRP Executive Director. "The remote learning and hybrid learning styles did not allow for schoolwide presentations. We hope to get back on track as restrictions continue to loosen."