DNR warns of electrocution on water-swollen lakes

Jun 19, 2019

INTERLOCHEN, MI (MPRN)--   The Michigan Department of Natural Resources says current high water levels increase the risk of electric shock drowning. 

Interlochen Public Radio’s Dan Wanschura reports that’s when a person comes into contact with an electric current in the water.

That electric current is caused by faulty or exposed wiring from boats and docks.

Things like frayed electrical cords or household extension cords that aren’t meant for use on the water.

The DNR says the shock can cause “complete loss of muscle control, the inability to move and, ultimately, lead to drowning.”

Marcus Collison is with the U.S. Coast Guard in Charlevoix. He says record-high lake levels expose more wiring to water than normal.

“With the high water levels a lot of these docks are almost submerged or some I’ve even seen completely submerged,” he says.

Collison says people should avoid swimming off of docks and piers that are wired with electricity.

High water levels could persist in the state until the end of August.