Drowning hazard signs to be installed at Lake Anna Dike 3 - NBC12 - Richmond, VA News

Drowning hazard signs to be installed at Lake Anna Dike 3

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LOUISA, VA (WWBT) -

Danger signs will soon be going up at a popular fishing spot in Louisa. This comes after two people have died in this specific area in recent years. 

The most recent was six-year-old Asa Gayle who fell into the water and drowned while fishing with her family. Her grandpa and a fisherman tried to save her but couldn't.  

The blue water looks inviting, but a little further past the rocky shore is a steep drop off and a strong undertow. Little Asa Gayle was found 30 feet under water near Dike 3 on Moody Town road.  

"It's a powerful, powerful undertow," said Major Lowe. "It reacts just as an undertow would." 

Signs already warn people not to swim or jump from the bridge. After Monday's death, Major Donnie Lowe with the Louisa County Sheriff's Office says they need to be more urgent - showing the area is a drowning hazard. 

"I think parents and first time visitors here will pay a little more attention to that - the verbiage will change a little bit," said Major Lowe.  

The goal is to make anyone think twice before jumping in. Warm water from one side of the levee funnels through, mixing with cooler water - creating an undertow strong enough to suck people under in the blink of an eye.  

"I think the signs would help a lot," said avid fisherman Pat Falcigno. "It puts some restriction on small kids - something for their safety- at least give them a chance." 

More signs, and a physical barrier will go up along the shoreline - discouraging swimming but still allowing people to fish. Meanwhile, Major Lowe is working to fix part of the guardrail. It used to be blocked, but someone cut the guardrail. Asa was fishing just before she fell in. Major Lowe says in the past, there have been problems with people stealing warning signs and that needs to stop.  

"Taking a sign is one thing - taking a safety related sign - you're putting somebody else's life at risk," Major Lowe added.

The sheriff's office is working with Dominion Power and the Game Commission to install the drowning hazard signs. They hope to have them up soon.

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