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Teen drowns in dive from floodgates (with CNC3 video)
A teenager, who ignored warnings from two watchmen, drowned after diving off the floodgates at the Tulsa Trace picnic site in Penal. The body of Dillon Lalchan, 17, of Cuchawan Trace, Debe, was fished out of the pond, which is 30 feet deep, shortly after 5 pm on Saturday. Divers pulled a seine across the river to prevent the body from floating downstream, then searched the murky waters and retrieved the body two hours later.
Lalchan’s three friends told police they were all drinking when Lalchan decided to dive off the floodgates which control the influx of salt water into the Penal mangroves. He got stuck in the mud and did not resurface. Officers from the Penal Police Station arrived within five minutes and began searching the pond.
Watchman Dindial Deonanan said more than a dozen people were liming at the picnic site on Saturday and watchmen cautioned several of them about jumping into the water. “They need to put up no bathing signs here to warn people about the dangers,” said Deonanan, who added that watchmen were often verbally and physically abused when they warned people.
“People does cuss and get on, so we have no choice but to leave them,” he said. Another watchman, who gave his name only as Ramkissoon, said security needed to be boosted at the site which attracts unscrupulous characters particularly at nights. Ramkissoon said many of the picnic sheds were vandalised.
“People burnt down three of the sheds and used the carrat to make cooks...Others stole the wooden seats so we need additional manpower,” he said. At Lalchan’s home yesterday, his uncle, Ivan, called for lifeguards to be posted at the picnic site. He said Lalchan was as a labourer in the Penal market.
Lalchan’s body was removed to the Forensic Science Centre where an autopsy is scheduled for today. Penal police are continuing investigations.
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