Reservoir where Clearfield man drowned was posted "no swimming"

Thursday , March 06, 2014 - 1:37 PM

Loretta Park, Bubba Brown, Standard-Examiner Staff

LAYTON — The murky reservoir where a Clearfield man drowned while swimming with two friends is posted with “no swimming” signs.

“We are up here all the time during the summer kicking people out for swimming,” Layton Police Lt. Jason Hinojosa said.

Family and friends of Tyler Flint, 20, waited at the top of the fire break road while officials finished their investigation Friday morning after the man’s body was found.Divers recovered Flint’s body about 8 a.m. at Holmes Creek Reservoir, Hinojosa said.

“Tyler was swimming with friends in the reservoir when he experienced trouble and began to go under the surface,” Hinojosa said.

One friend who was swimming close by Thursday afternoon tried to help, but “was about dragged down by Tyler himself,” Hinojosa said.A cadaver dog and sonar equipment pinpointed Flint’s body about 25 yards from the shore of the reservoir in about 15 feet of water, Hinojosa said.

An autopsy will be done at the state medical examiner’s office to determine cause of death. Tests will be done to determine if alcohol or drugs were involved, which is standard procedure. Officials believe the drowning is “purely a tragic accident,” Hinojosa said.

The search for Flint was started shortly after 4:30 p.m. on Thursday when police received a 911 call. The search was suspended at 9 p.m. due to darkness. Searchers were back at the pond at 6:30 a.m. Friday. The dog, a while later, indicated where the body was and within an hour they had recovered the body, Hinojosa said.Flint had been swimming with friends, a 19-year-old man and an 18-year-old woman. Hinojosa said the three were about halfway across when Flint told his friends he did not think he could make it the rest of the way.

The 19-year-old man tried to help Flint, but was not successful, Hinojosa said.

A 53-year-old man also swam out in an attempt to help.

Davis County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue dive team, Weber County Search and Rescue dive team and Utah Highway Patrol’s dive team were all on scene Friday morning, Hinojosa said.

“No swimming” signs are posted around the reservoir, which is a popular fishing area. It serves as a secondary water irrigation system.

This is the first drowning at Holmes Creek Reservoir that Hinojosa knows about in his 16 years with the police department.

The pond is dark and murky, so it is not a very good place to swim, he said.

A helicopter was deployed to help search with an aerial view Thursday night.

Layton Fire Department spokesman Doug Bitton said about 30 searchers, including five from the Davis County dive team, worked into the evening hours in an attempt to recover the man.

Visibility in the reservoir was low, even before nightfall, Bitton said.

The reservoir’s depth where the dive team was searching is about 20 feet, Bitton said.

Contact reporter Loretta Park at 801-625-4252 or Follow her on Twitter @LorettaParkSE. Contact reporter Bubba Brown at 801-625-4221 or Follow him on Twitter at @BubbaBrownSE.

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