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WDAY: The News Leader

Published July 23, 2013, 05:56 PM

After a search for a Red River swimmer some are asking questions

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV)-- An exhaustive search for a swimmer along the Red River Monday, is raising questions about what you're allowed to do, if you want to get out on the water.

By: Kay Cooley, WDAY

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV)-- An exhaustive search for a swimmer along the Red River Monday, is raising questions about what you're allowed to do, if you want to get out on the water.

From boating to tubing and swimming. There are many misconceptions that flow with the river.

When you go to start your boat, or even just hit the muddy banks, it's not something you see everyday.

Pete Fendt- Valley Water Rescue President: "people used to swim in the river regularly all the time."

But Monday afternoon, local law enforcement and rescue crews spent an hour searching for a swimmer who they believed didn't make it out, after she voluntarily went in.

LT. Joel Vettel- Fargo Police: "Ultimately wasting a lot of resources due to her inability to practice those good safety procedures."

Police say she was intoxicated, and even swimming without drinking can get dangerous.

Fendt: "yeah I wouldn't recommend it as a swimming hole, but certainly kayaking, canoeing."

From the banks you don't often see too many people taking advantage of the river that divides our cities, but whether you're in the water or out, swimming or in a boat, you can do it all.

Vettel: "There is no law against swimming in the red river. I think often times there is a misconception that is illegal."

He says by the looks of it, many people just don't want to.

From the trash and debris.

"you name it, it's in the river."

To its murky color.

"the shores are so covered with mud, if you go in the river, that's how you're going to come out."

Most swimmers or boaters who do go in, know how to do it right.

"certainly utilize this beautiful river that we have, but do it in a smart and certainly a respectful way."

The only time river rules take effect is during emergencies like flood season. That's when you're not allowed to swim.

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