By Anna Giles


NEVADA COUNTY (CBS13) — Nevada County Sheriff’s deputies want to send a clear message: the water in the south Yuba River is not safe to swim in.

On Sunday, a man and his daughter were swept away by fast-moving rapids. The young girl survived but her dad has not resurfaced.

READ MORE: Man Swept Down South Yuba River Remains Missing

CBS13 spoke with the mom of this little girl who said she’s traumatized and devastated her father is gone. The mom said she’s at home safe as the whole family waits and hopes Alexander Alvarez’s body is found.

She said this was supposed to be a fun day trip, but it turned into a trauma. The family hadn’t been to the area in while. The Sacramento mother was forced to watch as her daughter and the father of her child struggled against the rapids. She said they fell in about the same time as they walked across the river, but her daughter was able to hold onto a rock.

“I think you have to be really respectful of the river. It’s a powerful river, don’t take it for granted,” said William Gerstner, a hiker

The Nevada County Sheriff’s Office said people ignored warnings about how dangerous the river is, even as they searched for Alvarez’s body.

READ: Yuba County Sheriff’s Department Rescues Woman’s Prosthetic Leg From Reservoir

Shane Starbuck visits this area with his kids often. He said the fast-moving water is a big concern.

“We kind of take it by chance if we go up there and it’s too quick and we think there might be undertows we will avoid it and stay out of it,” Starbuck said.

The mother of the girl who survived being swept away said she hopes others take the time to wear life vests.

Nevada County Sheriffs Deputies plan to resume their search Tuesday.

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