SCOTTS MILLS, OR (KPTV) - An Oregon teen saved his younger brother from drowning in a Marion County swimming hole.
Declan Park, 8, got caught in the current after jumping in near the waterfall at Butte Creek in Scotts Mills Park on Monday.
"He was sitting there squirming around. He couldn't swim really anywhere," said Thomas Park, 14.
Thomas Park said he reacted immediately.
"I went blank and just jumped in, said I gotta get him," he said.
The current was so strong, Thomas Park struggled to pull his brother to safety. But he eventually got his younger brother to the side of the swimming hole, where others helped them get out of the water and their aunt called 911.
The Marion County Sheriff's Office said the close call is a good reminder to be careful in open water.
Deputies offer the following tips:
• Swim in designated areas supervised by lifeguards.
• Always swim with a buddy
• Ensure that everyone in the family learns to swim well.
• Never leave a young child unattended near water and do not trust a child's life to another child; teach children to always ask permission to go near water.
• Have young children or inexperienced swimmers wear U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jackets around water, but do not rely on life jackets alone.
• Establish rules for your family and enforce them without fail. For example, set limits based on each person's ability.