A 14-year-old boy went missing on Monday evening and is believed to have drowned while swimming in the Thames, according to London police, as thousands flocked to bodies of water to escape. Scorching heat in Britain.
The London Metropolitan Police were alerted late on Monday to reports that a child had entered a river in Richmond, southwest London. Extensive searches were carried out by all three emergency responders and several civilians, but they were called off after they failed to find him.
“Despite the best efforts of all involved, we must sadly conclude that this boy has died,” Superintendent Richard Smith of the Metropolitan Police Southwest Command Unit said in a statement. “Efforts to recover his body will continue tonight.”
Authorities have warned of the dangers of swimming in the Thames and other open waters in recent days as people flock to increasingly popular “wild swimming” spots.
“I know it can be tempting to jump in and cool off in rivers, reservoirs, lakes or other open bodies of water on days like today when temperatures reach record highs,” said Superintendent Smith. “Please do not.” The boy’s alleged death showed “the terrible consequences of what happens when something goes wrong,” he said.