By Rubén Morales Iglesias: The Forest Department said on Monday that following two separate drowning incidents involving tourists at the Rio On Pools in Mountain Pine Ridge, the Ministry of Sustainable Development, Climate Change and Disaster Risk Management has requested an internal investigation. The Ministry’s request comes as the police investigation is ongoing.
“The department wishes to express heartfelt condolences to the families of the two children who died in these incidents” said the Forestry Department as it warned about the risks of swimming in the Mountain Pine Ridge recreational areas.
“Close adult supervision is strongly recommended, especially when children are using natural pool formations, as lifeguards are not stationed at these locations,” said the Forestry Department.
“The department also discourages the consumption of alcohol while swimming.”
The Forest Department said it is reviewing all visitor safety protocols to address any potential gaps.
“In the coming weeks, a public awareness campaign will be initiated to remind visitors of the risks associated with recreation at the sites, as well as safety measures to ensure a safe visitor experience,” said the Forest Department.
On Saturday and Sunday, in two unfortunate and rare incidents, two American children drowned at the Rio On Pools.
On Saturday, 6-year-old Isaac Pipersburgh drowned as he jumped off a rock into the water while at the pools with his family.
Then, on Sunday, 8-year-old Cerys MacTaggart of Idaho, United States, drowned at the pools as well. She was visiting the Rio On Pools with her family.