WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) — A man who drowned in a southwest Wichita lake Thursday has been identified as 22-year-old Kyler Rutherford.
Firefighters searched the lake for hours before finding the victim. It all started around 3:40 p.m. when authorities responded to a submersion in the 2600 block of S. West St.
Wichita Fire Department Battalion Chief Jose Ocadiz said at a news conference that witnesses were able to tell firefighters where the man in his 20s was last seen. The dive team was deployed into the lake.
For the first two hours, first responders conducted search and rescue efforts. After the two-hour mark, first responders switched over to recovery mode.
According to Ocadiz, parts of the lake are 40 feet deep.
“The dive teams inside, they have said that visibility is about 10 feet around them, located in front of them. That’s pretty good visibility in this type of water right now,” said Ocadiz.
Ocadiz says the divers worked to cover the area in a grid-like pattern.
“Right now, we’re printing off a map of the lake itself and going to basically cut it up into grids and small quadrants so that we can be able to verify that we’ve already searched this area,” Ocadiz said.
The water rescue team also utilized sonar to find the man.
“Right now, everything is being deployed and being utilized to see if we, to speed up the process and being able to locate the individual,” said Ocadiz.
Ocadiz says another important aspect was the water and current.
“It’s very critical on the possible movement of the of the individual that’s inside there,” Ocatdiz said.