After Recent Scares, Locals Hope People on Stanislaus River Stay Safety-Conscious

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

MODESTO--

Near drownings and trash. Families who live near the Stanislaus River are upset with visitors who make their way to the area and get themselves in trouble.

The water may look nice and inviting but the river is flowing with the kind of pressure rangers said could go from easy-going to very dangerous.

“Be sure you know what you’re doing because if you don’t, you’d really be better off going to the reservoir,” Torri Bergstrom, who lives by the river, told FOX40.

Bergstrom said she’s fed up with the near drownings and trash visitors leave behind. She told FOX40 she’s also tired of the close calls she and her family have witnessed, including two recent ones.

This past Monday, a man almost drowned but managed to get to shore on his own, according to rangers. Another, a day earlier, involving a woman and a once inflatable daisy.

“Can you believe somebody could go down the river in that?" Bergstrom said.

She keeps the now deflated toy around as an example of what not to use. Her straight forward advice is also the same seen throughout the Stanislaus River Park.

"Always wear a life jacket, you know, in and around the water. Those are the messages that you’ll see throughout the parks,” Park Manager Heather Wright said.

Pointers that Bergstrom can agree with.

“A real raft, not a Dollar Tree raft or a Kmart Coffin. Use a raft,” she said. “If you’re new, please use a raft and a life vest."

Rangers also advise that visitors hire professionals who can take them through the water. They can outfit them in coast guard approved equipment.