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Man drowns in tragic accident while swimming in river –

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A man drowned Monday in a tragic accident after getting into difficulty while swimming in a river in Limerick city.

The man, aged in his 20s, went for a swim in the Abbey River, near the Absolute Hotel, situated close to Harry’s Mall around 1pm.

According to sources the man was last seen near Baal’s Bridge heading in the direction of the mouth of the River Shannon.

The deceased was with another male who alerted emergency services.

A major search operation took place, involving units attached to Limerick City Fire and Rescue Service, including members of the fire service’s specially trained water rescue officers, referred to as SRTs (Swift Water Rescue Technicians).

Members of the Limerick Marine Search and Rescue Service (LMSRS), along with the Shannon-based Coast Guard Rescue Helicopter, were also mobilised as part of the search.

“We believe the man went for a swim and that he may not have realised that the temperature of the river is very cold at this time of the year, it’s even colder than the sea,” said a reliable source.

“There is also very fast flowing current in that area,” they added.

Earlier gardai confirmed that their members along with other emergency services were “at the scene of an incident on the Abbey River, Limerick”.

Joe Morgan, of Limerick Marine Search and Rescue Service (LMSRS) said they had been  “engaged in an ongoing search of the river”.

LMSRS divers were to attempt underwater searches of the scene at low tide on Monday evening.

The search and rescue group recovered the man’s body from the River Shannon near Sarsfield House located close to Arthur’s Quay around 6pm.

The body was removed from the scene by hearse to University Hospital Limerick mortuary.

Gardai were to contact the family of the deceased and prepare a file for the Limerick City Coroner’s Office.

It’s understood Gardaí are treating the man’s death as a tragic accident.

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