JONES COUNTY, Miss. (WDAM) - The Jones County Sheriff’s Office is stressing water safety this summer after the department’s dive team responded to several emergency rescues and drownings this year. Now, they are reminding you to be alert and aware of the potential dangers when swimming.
“You have no visibility. It’s a either little or no visibility whenever you dive down in these lakes and streams,” Major Jamie Tedford said.
The JCSO dive team spends hours executing underwater search and rescue operations training in murky waters throughout the county. Major Jamie Tedford said their team practices precise search patterns and prepares for emergency situations.
“At any given time we can be called out to a drowning or if there is a piece of evidence we need to go dive for,” Tedford said.
Or a rescue and recovery mission. While there is a purpose behind the practice, Tedford said the sheriff’s office wants to remind swimmers the importance of staying safe this summer to prevent an emergency from happening.
“There are many different lakes and streams that individuals use in Jones County, especially in the summer months,” Tedford said.
If you do utilize those summer swimming holes, Tedford said don’t go alone. If there are kids, make sure there is adult supervision and if you aren’t an avid swimmer take a life jacket. Another key component to safety this summer, don’t jump from bridges and cliffs into those natural bodies of water.
“As a family outing, a lot of times it can turn tragic very quick just by someone jumping off the bank,” Tedford said.
In the worst possible case causing the dive team to jump into action.
“It is important you stay safe this summer and that’s what matters to the Jones County Sheriff’s Department,” Tedford said.