18-year-old drowns over the weekend, official offers safety tips

Jun 5, 2023, 7:00 PM

A 18-year-old man died over the weekend after an apparent drowning at Palisade State Park. Photo cr...

A 18-year-old man died over the weekend after an apparent drowning at Palisade State Park. Photo credit: Utah State Parks.

SALT LAKE CITY — An 18-year-old man passed away over the weekend after drowning at Palisade State Park.

According to a news release from the Utah State Parks, park rangers from Palisade State Park along with deputies from the Sanpete County Sheriff’s received a report of a drowning around 5 p.m. Saturday.

Devan Chavez, public information officer for the Utah State Parks, joined Dave & Dujanovic on Monday with Dave Noriega and guest host Maura Carabello with the latest. Chavez also provides some safety tips for those heading to a lake later this summer. 

18-year-old drowns over the weekend

Noriega asked, “Can you give us an update of what happened here at Palisade State Park?”

Chavez says the victim has been identified as Alejandro Morales, of Goshen. Chavez also says the victim was swimming with some friends.

“A little bit of some inclement weather came in,” Chavez said. “They started struggling. Some passers by helped some swimmers out that were also struggling. But Alejandro went under the surface of the water and didn’t pop back up. So, they called for help.”

Chavez says the victim was found in 15 to 20 feet of water. After efforts were made to revive the victim, he was rushed to a hospital. However, the victim later died at the hospital.

Carabello asked, “Can you describe a little more how to be prepared? How quickly does it come in? Is it waves? Is it the cold? What happens when weather comes in?”

Chavez says that can all play a part in any outdoor recreation.

He says even though it may be hot outside, the water in a lake may still be cold.

“That water is still quite cold just because it’s warm outside,” Chavez said. “Doesn’t mean the water is going to match that temperature.”

Water from snowmelt may be colder

Chavez says there is another factor to consider when going to the water.

“A lot of this water is coming from snowmelt from a winter that lasted a lot longer than usual,” he said. “So that water is going to be a little bit more cold.”

Because weather can change rapidly, Chavez advises individuals keep an eye on the weather forecast before heading out. 

Noriega asked, “Were they wearing life jackets in this situation?”

While the investigation into the incident is still ongoing, Chavez says it does not appear the swimmers in this incident were wearing a life jackets.

This leads Chavez to another safety tip.

“But more important is always going with friends, a buddy, not going alone,” he said. “That way, if something does happen like it did in this case, we can get rescuers out as quickly as possible and wearing your life jacket of course.”

Listen to the entire segment. 


Dave & Dujanovic can be heard weekdays from 9 a.m. to noon. on KSL NewsRadio. Users can find the show on the KSL NewsRadio website and app, as well as Apple Podcasts and Google Play.  

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18-year-old drowns over the weekend, official offers safety tips