Fire crews patrol the Rio Grande after uptick in water rescues

Local News

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Thursday was a great day to be out on the water.

“We’re going to celebrate America’s birthday by floating down the river, having a good time. It’s our yearly tradition,” said Ryan Chavez.

After a wet winter, conditions on the Rio Grande are not what people are used to. “We have a lot of fast-moving currents, faster-moving undertow currents,” said Brian Rose the Deputy Chief of Operations for Bernalillo County Fire.

Around 10 a.m. Thursday, Bernalillo County Fire was called out to Alameda and the river to assist Corrales Fire when two kayakers needed help. “We were able to come to this location, they requested our airboat. When we were about to launch the airboat they were able to recover the two kayakers,” said Rose.

The county’s flyboat with a two-man crew is now patrolling the river. “We rescued two, or three people yesterday out of the river including a 7-year-old child,” said Rose.

He said they urge everyone out on the water today, to take precautions and be safe. “Yeah we all have life vests for the children, tubes are all gonna be tied together, we’ll stay in a close group,” said Gaspar Mastas.

If you’ve never been out on the water, fire crews suggest making other plans. “It may seem to be pretty benign, but is actually exceptionally dangerous right now,” said Rose.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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