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Wasatch County

Teen drowns in Deer Creek Reservoir

Deer Creek State Park in Utah in summer
Adobe Stock
FILE: Boaters drive through Deer Creek Reservoir in summer.

A teenager drowned at Deer Creek Reservoir last weekend. 

18-year-old John Ballan from Venezuela was visiting Deer Creek Reservoir with friends and family last Sunday afternoon when he drowned.

A report from the Utah Division of State Parks says Ballan and a family member were swimming off a boat near the Sailboat Beach area. The family member then began to struggle to keep their head above water. After jumping in the water to help, Ballan also began struggling. According to the report, neither of the swimmers were wearing life jackets.

Boaters nearby noticed the pair and managed to bring the other swimmer safely to shore but weren’t able to help Ballan in time.

According to the release, park rangers first received a call around 4:30 p.m. Wasatch County Sheriff’s deputies, Wasatch County Search and Rescue and the Outdoor Recreation Remotely Operated Vehicle team also responded.

The team recovered Ballan’s body later Sunday night around 11:30 p.m.

The report notes that the surface water temperature was 64 degrees at the time of the drowning.

The Utah Division of State Parks extended condolences to Ballan’s friends and family and issued a safety reminder. The release said swimmers should wear life jackets and helmets, always swim with a buddy and tell someone where they are going and when they expect to return.

Visit stateparks.utah.gov for more about Utah’s state parks, safety tips, laws and rules.