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Warning from West Yorkshire Police after man feared drowned in lagoon tragedy

Police urge swimmers to stay out of open water

Police have warned people of the dangers of swimming in open water after a man was feared drowned.

Emergency services were called to Horbury Lagoon in Horbury on Saturday night after a man got into difficulties.

Despite an extensive search and rescue operation involving firefighters from Rastrick , Dewsbury , Ossett, Wakefield and Rothwell the man could not be found.

Horbury Lagoon, Wakefield where a man is believed to have drowned.

Supt Marianne Huison, of West Yorkshire Police , said: “We are continuing enquiries at the scene of this tragic incident today and while the male has not yet been recovered, it is at this time believed he has sadly drowned.”

And she urged the public to heed the dangers of swimming in open water following the suspected drowning of the man.

Horbury Lagoon, Wakefield where a man is believed to have drowned.

She added: “I would like to remind all residents in and visitors to West Yorkshire of the extreme dangers posed by swimming in or entering open water at lagoons or industrial sites.

“Such water can be very cold, even in the summer months, and people suddenly entering cold water are susceptible to hyperventilation, which could result in the body going into seizure.

“There can also be hidden currents and unseen dangers such as mud banks or items under the water which a swimmer can become caught on.

“Our enquiries at the lagoon to locate this male are expected to continue throughout today and potentially into Monday and officers are working to support his family at this time.”

Horbury Lagoon, Wakefield where a man is believed to have drowned.

Police, fire and ambulance services attended the scene at Forge Lane and conducted numerous searches to try and locate the man, who is thought to be 32 and from the Leeds area.

The lagoon is around five acres in size with an average depth of seven metres. Its water lies between the M1 motorway, the railway and the River Calder.

It was developed from an old gravel pit and is used by members of Wakefield Angling Club which specifies no swimming or boating in its rules.

Horbury Lagoon, Wakefield where a man is believed to have drowned.

Whitaker’s Sand and Gravel Company originally leased the waters to the club in the early 1950s.

Later the lagoon and surrounding land was transferred to Horbury Urban District Council and then to Wakefield Metropolitan Council in more recent years.

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