SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – The body of a Sacramento 17-year-old is now recovered from the American River after witnesses say he jumped into the water Saturday and never came back up.
The Sacramento County Coroner’s Office reports the victim was 17-year old Melino Liu. He was swimming in the river by the El Manto river access point in Rancho Cordova.READ MORE: Sacramento SPCA Celebrating Opening Of New Animal Hospital
The death is a reminder that just because the water level is lower right now, it doesn’t mean it’s any less dangerous. That spot on the American River may be an ideal setting on a hot day, but it can also be a danger zone.
Diana Kleckner came out on the El Manto drive river access wearing her safety vest.
“We’ve always come prepared with the proper safety gear because we do every single year hear so many of these tragedies,” Kleckner said.
After the teen went missing Saturday, search crews worked late into the night. Sacramento Metro Fire spokesperson Chris Vestal says the teen was not wearing a life jacket.
“Had he been, then we probably wouldn’t be having this conversation today,” Vestal said.READ MORE: Call Kurtis: Lincoln Couple Fined $350 For Car They Sold 5 Years Ago
The American River may be running low right now, but the current is still moving fast, the water is cold, and the river bottom is closer, which is a problem for swimmers.
“Those underground obstructions that can trap your feet and then make you stuck, and if you do get stuck, the water behind you will then push you and keep your head underwater, which will ultimately drown you,” Vestal said.
The American River may be running low right now, but the current is still moving fast, the water is cold, and the river bottom is closer, a problem for swimmers.
“Make sure that we know what we’re getting ourselves into ahead of time,”
The teen’s life cut too short.MORE NEWS: Newsom Wants To Pay All Back Rent Owed By Low-Income Californians Using Pandemic Relief Funds
Sacramento County has free life vest borrowing stations along many spots on the river. It’s not clear whether any were available at the time the teen was at the river.