Rescue crews warning about Lake Michigan during this hot weekend

Posted at 10:32 PM, Jun 14, 2018
and last updated 2018-06-14 23:32:17-04

Big crowds are expected to head to local lakes this weekend, but rescue crews are warning about a danger you can't see in the water.

The Milwaukee Fire Department Dive Rescue Team is ready 24-7 to head out to any problems on Lake Michigan or the Milwaukee River. A big concern for this weekend when the temperatures are expected to spike over 90 is the lake temperature. The water is sitting around 55 degrees right now.

"It's the water temperature that gives you shock that your body is not used to that cold water," said Lt. Kevin Monaghan. "If you aren't a good strong swimmer or somebody's not there to throw you a lifeline or a throw ring you could be overcome by that."

Monaghan said the people who are just playing on the beach will likely be okay, but people swimming off boats or those who swim further out should be aware of the risks.

"You could start to get the early signs of hypothermia or hypothermia shock," said Monaghan. "That's when it slows the heart rate down, slows your body responses and being able to get yourself out of a certain situation."

Thursday afternoon a 53-year-old man died swimming in Lake Geneva. In Washington County, an 81-year-old man died after his boat capsized on Wallace Lake. 

Monaghan said there is no reason why people can't enjoy the water this weekend safely, just remember to never swim alone and to wear a life vest.

"Let people know where you are going so if there is an issue or a problem people are able to help you in a quick manner," said Monaghan.