UPDATE: Authorities say they have recovered the body of a man who drowned in Blue Lake Wednesday. No information is being released yet on the man. For more details on what happened, see story below.
(WEST OF ONAWA, IA) The Monona County Sheriff's office is not releasing any information on a man they believe drowned in Blue Lake, just west of Onawa, Iowa.
The man was out here with his family swimming. Witnesses say he was trying to get to the other side of the lake when he slipped under the water. At that point they called 911.
The Monona County Sheriff's office is now calling this a recovery mission - divers from Sioux City have been searching for hours feeling along the bottom of the lake and using sonar to pick out spots to search.
"We had a boat that was part of our fisheries, the SNR fisheries, and they've marked a couple of anomalies on the bottom but we don't know what that is, that's why we have the dive team out there searching those areas," said Jeff Pratt, the Monona County Sheriff.
The lake is only about 6-7 ft. deep down the middle of the channel and Pratt says he doesn't believe the man got stuck on anything at the bottom.
"It's an old oxbow lake so its pretty muddy bottom, silty bottom, so we're just having a tough time locating exactly where he may have drowned," he said.
Search crews are focusing on the north end of the lake but have done a thorough search of the entire shoreline.
It's still uncertain whether alcohol played a factor in all of this, but that is something the police department and sheriff's office are considering.
Search crews called off their efforts at 8:45 p.m. Wednesday night. They'll begin their recovery effort again at 9 a.m. Thursday morning.