• 18-year-old Ohio woman in critical condition after being sucked through dam spillway

    By: USA Today

    Updated:

    MIFFLIN, Ohio — An 18-year-old Ohio woman was hospitalized in critical condition Thursday after being pulled from a dam spillway.

    According to Carl Richert, chief deputy for the Ashland County Sheriff's Department, Regina Miller, 18, of Lakeville was fishing with her sister and four teen-age boys near the dam on Charles Mill Lake east of Mansfield at around 2 a.m. 

    Miller and her sister decided to go swimming, Richert said.

    Both women started having trouble swimming because of the strong currents; the first 911 call was received at 2:17 a.m., Richert said. One of the boys was able to help Miller’s sister out of the water.

    Miller was seen being sucked in through the grate of the north side of the dam at 2:21 a.m.

    Jared Tims, of Fredericktown, who was fishing on the south side of the dam near the spillway, saw a girl face-down in the water at 2:24 a.m., Richert said.

    Tims jumped in, dragged the woman to the shore and started performing CPR with the help of an unknown boy who came to assist. The woman had no pulse and was not breathing when she was pulled from the water.

    A rescue squad from Mifflin Township took the victim to OhioHealth Mansfield Hospital, Richert said.

    She was in critical condition Thursday morning, according to a hospital official.

    Mifflin Township/Ashland County Fire Chief J.J. Bittinger said there are designated swimming areas at Charles Mill.

    "It's very dangerous at the dam," he said. "And right now there's a lot of water pressure because of the rain we've been having recently. There's a lot of water flowing."

    Bittinger said the water by the dam looks calm but there is a strong undercurrent. No one should be swimming at the dam anytime, he said. 

    Follow Lou Whitmire on Twitter: @LWhitmir

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