A man who tried to swim across the Potomac River near Fletcher’s Cove is suspected to be dead, according to D.C. Fire and EMS.
Fire department spokesman Vito Maggiolo said multiple witnesses saw someone trying to swim across the river from the Virginia side Sunday afternoon. They saw the swimmer go under the water without resurfacing.
Update water rescue Potomac River vicinity Fletchers boathouse. Credible witnesses saw swimmer go under. #DCsBravest Fireboats along with @DCPoliceDept Harbor Units, @ArlingtonVaFD boats, @MDSP helicopter are conducting search operations. pic.twitter.com/hcIHb5YRy9
— DC Fire and EMS (@dcfireems) June 6, 2021
A Maryland State Police helicopter, along with D.C. police harbor units, Arlington fireboats and the U.S. Coast Guard, assisted in the search. Authorities will continue the effort to recover the man’s body this week.
Fire officials took the opportunity to remind would-be swimmers of the Potomac River’s hidden hazards, especially north of the Key Bridge into the Fletcher’s Cove area.
“The Potomac is a beautiful and scenic river, but while it appears placid on the surface, underneath, there are very strong currents (and) hidden rocks,” Maggiolo told WTOP.
“If you fall into the Potomac or try to swim it, you’re very likely to get pulled under; sometimes, you’ll be in a vortex where it’s almost like a washing machine.”