Monday, May 17, 2021

Swimmers Ask Why Roosevelt Island Sportspark Pool Unexpectedly Closed This Morning - FDNY Reports Drowning/Cardiac Arrest Incident At Pool Yesterday, Person Taken To Hospital, Condition Unknown At This Time - UPDATE, Sad News, Sportspark Swimmer Died

Roosevelt Island swimmers arrived at the Sportspark Pool this morning to find it closed. A tipster reported this morning:

I arrived at the pool this morning to find it closed. There was a line of people waiting to get in and only the sign below.

Rumors were spreading today of a drowning yesterday afternoon at the Sportspark Pool as the reason for its closing this morning.

According to a second Tipster:

Have you heard anything about a drowning in the pool yesterday? The pool was closed earlier and we have heard a mention of an incident (no details though).
And a third Tipster:
The rumor I heard about the pool is that someone drowned, a man in his 30s And that they need to do an investigation He was in one of the swim lanes when it occurred, another swimmer pulled him out.

In response to my inquiry, a NYC Fire Department spokesperson answered:

Units responded to 250 W. Main st at 17:21 hrs on 05/16 for a report of a drowning /cardiac arrest. Patient transported to Mt Sinai queens. No condition/pedigree

Hopefully, the person is getting better.

Earlier this morning, I asked the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) why the Sportspark pool was closed this morning and if there was a drowning yesterday. No response yet. 

UPDATE 4 PM - Very sad news. According to RIOC President Shelton Haynes:

It is with great sadness that we confirm on Sunday, May 16th at approximately 5:25 p.m., a 21-year-old individual, who was utilizing Sportspark Pool, was rushed to Mount Sinai Queens where they were pronounced dead. 

 Chief Kevin Brown of the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation Public Safety Department responded to the incident, along with EMT, FDNY, and NYPD. RIOC is working in full support of an investigation being conducted by the NYPD and the Medical Examiner's office. Additionally, an internal review is being conducted by RIOC to learn and understand the facts surrounding this devastating incident. 

During this time, the thoughts, prayers, and condolences of everyone at RIOC are with the family, friends, and loved ones of this young person.

UPDATE 8:30 PM - RIOC adds: 

Please be advised that the Sportspark pool is currently closed until further notice. An update will be sent when the pool re-opens.

UPDATE 5/21 - The Sportspark Pool has been closed since the day after the drowning incident. 

Asked why the Sportspark Pool remains closed, RIOC responded with this Advisory:

Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation (RIOC) is committed to the well-being of our community and is mindful of the role Sportspark Pool plays within it. We are also in support of our staff taking time and space to process Sunday’s traumatic event. In the interim, Sportspark Pool will remain closed pending RIOC’s effort to fully restaff the pool area.

In response to repeated inquires beginning June 2021, on March 16, 2022, a NYC Medical Examiners Office spokesperson reported:

Here is the determination made by the medical examiner for the May death.

Cause of death: Drowning due to cardiac arrhythmia possibly due to variants of undetermined significance in TRPM4 and ANK2 genes

Manner of death: Accident

RIOC refused to answer any questions.