Body Found in Potomac River During Search for Missing Swimmer, Officials Say

The "body has since been recovered," announced Pete Piringer, spokesman for Montgomery County Fire & Rescue Service on Monday

<p>Getty</p> Stock image of the Potomac River


Stock image of the Potomac River

A body found in the Potomac River is believed to be that of a missing swimmer.

On Monday, May 27, Montgomery County Fire & Rescue Service spokesman Pete Piringer explained in a video on X, formerly Twitter, that the search began on Friday, May 24, after "receiving a report of a couple of swimmers that attempted to swim from Virginia to Maryland."

"One of them became distressed and went underwater and has been missing ever since, presumed to be drowned. Search has been taking place for the last couple of days," added Piringer.

Piringer shared on X that authorities were initially dispatched to the scene around 8:45 p.m. on Friday and conducted an "exhaustive search by land, water, [and] air."

<p>x</p> Warning sign near Potomac River


Warning sign near Potomac River

Related: Mich. Mom Dies While Saving Her Toddler’s Life from Oncoming Out-of-Control Jeep: Authorities

On Sunday, May 26, search teams used sonar and located what appeared to be a body "under the water stuck amongst some rocks in the vicinity of Sandy Landing, which is just south of the Great Falls," said Piringer in his video.

"This morning, [search and rescue crews] were going to go back down there and deal with that situation, recover the body, but a local kayaker did come by and report that the body was in the water and that body has since been recovered," added Piringer.

Noting that there is an ongoing death investigation, the spokesperson added, "We believe it to be the swimmer that was presumed drowned and missing since Friday."

The swimmer has not been identified by officials.

Related: At Least 21 Dead, Including Mom and 2 Kids, from Severe Memorial Day Weekend Weather: Reports

According to the National Park Service, the Potomac River, on average, is 27 feet deep and has an average flow rate of 10,000 cubic feet per second.

The agency states on its website that swimming or wading in the river is illegal, and those who commit the offense may be fined $200, appear in federal court, and be arrested.

On Friday, the Montgomery County Fire & Rescue Service kicked off its annual Potomac River Safety Campaign. Captain Andrew Bell, with the MCFRS Water Rescue Team, also pointed out what makes the river dangerous in an interview shared on the organization's blog site.

"The river is moving fast and there are a lot of hazards that you can get pinned up against, get your feet trapped in. And the trees, they create what we call a strainer effect where, if you get swept into them, you can very easily get caught and trapped by your body.” Even wading into the river can lead to a dangerous situation," he said.

Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE's free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from celebrity news to compelling human interest stories.

"Mud and silt and pollutants make it impossible to see more than a few inches below the water’s surface. The river’s bottom is too often underestimated," Bell added.

For more People news, make sure to sign up for our newsletter!

Read the original article on People.