District Digest News Stories

Swimmer rescue prompts water safety message for the holiday

Nashville District Public Affairs
Published July 2, 2012

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (July 2, 2012) – Three U. S. Army Corps of Engineers Nashville District Park Rangers are to thank for the rescue of a group of swimmers at J. Percy Priest Lake on Tuesday July 26, 2012.

USACE Park Rangers Matt Leftwich, Carter Robinson and Ben MacIntyre were on patrol around the Weakley Road Bridge area when they noticed swimmers attempting to cross the lake without life jackets. Immediately the three approached the swimmers and proceeded to load them into their USACE boat providing them life jackets and a ride back to shore.

One individual informed the Park Rangers that he was unsure if he could have made it to shore on his own and was becoming very fatigued before the rangers arrived.

“Just don’t do it!” said Park Ranger Matt Leftwich when asked to give a word of warning to other swimmers attempting the same thing.

“We have swimming areas for a reason. The area we found these swimmers in is really dangerous, there’s only one boat lane and they come flying in, the last thing they’re expecting to see is a swimmer out there.”

The Nashville District is proud of its Park Rangers who do an outstanding job patrolling their lakes and protecting those who choose to enjoy recreation activities on Corps lakes.

“With the holiday approaching, be sure to think twice about swimming outside of designated swimming areas as they can be especially dangerous due to high boat traffic volume, strong undercurrents, and unknown depths,” Leftwich went on to say.

Anyone boating or even enjoying time by the shore should wear a life jacket and practice other water safety habits as well.

The public can obtain news, updates and information from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Nashville District on the district’s website at www.lrn.usace.army.mil, on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/nashvillecorps and on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/nashvillecorps. Also follow J. Percy Priest Lake at http://www.facebook.com/jpercypriestlake.