Authorities respond to reports of drowning in Gridley

May 25, 2015 10:01 PM by Debbie Cobb

A Memorial Day swim turned tragic at a popular swimming hole in the Gridley area Monday evening. It happened about 5pm in the Gridley Plunge Pond. According to the CHP, Austin Harr, 21 was pulled out of the water unresponsive.

Several people attempted to try and locate Harr, but the water was to murky. Several agencies were on scene and a helicopter was called to help. Eventually the Butte County Sheriff's Office used new sonar equipment to locate the victim.

The sonar device was able to find the individual near the bottom of the pond.

Cal Fire Division Chief David Hawks says the victim was located in the middle of the water 16 feet below.

Harr had been uner the water more than 30 minutes. CPR was started and he was taken immedietly to the hospital in Gridley.

Witnesses say Harr was there with family partying for Memorial Day and he was attempting to carry large rocks from one side of the pond to the other. It wasn't a very large rock, but he reportedly stuck it in his pants and tried to swim but didn't make it.

It is the same location two others drowned two years ago. When in the water like that, Hawk recommends wearing life preservers.


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