Search for missing Forres swimmer ends in tragedy

The search for a missing man on the River Findhorn ended in tragedy on Sunday morning when his body was found on the shore at Findhorn Bay.

Emergency services were called at shortly after 4pm on Saturday afternoon to reports that a man who had gone swimming in the river at Randolph’s Leap and not returned.

A SAR helicopter from RAF Lossiemouth joined Coastguard, Fire and Rescue Service and a specialist Police Scotland search team but the search was called off later on Saturday evening.

The search was resumed on Sunday morning but called off when a body was found by a member of the public on the shore at Findhorn Bay. The man was later named as Matthew Crosbie, 19 and from Forres.  Mr Crosbie was a sports and fitness student at Moray College UHI.

Warning had earlier been issued about exceptional high water conditions on the river, with Randolph’s Leap having been the scene of several emergency situations over the years.  A 39-year-old died after slipping and falling into the river at the beauty spot two years ago.

Following the tragedy Inspector Paul McCruden from Police Scotland issued a reminder to the public of the dangers in swimming in rivers and reservoirs.

He said: “I would like to remind the public of the significant dangers posed by rivers especially in the aftermath of rainfall, the currents are very strong, unpredictable and the water is often very deep.

“It can also be deceptively cold and there may be objects under the water that are hazardous. You can get swept away very quickly.

“Our firm advice is ‘do not be tempted’ regardless of how strong a swimmer you are. Do not jump in or swim.”

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