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How many human remains have been found in Lake Mead?

As draught conditions persist in the US west, the level water is Lake Mead is decreasing rapidly, leading to some tragic findings.

As draught conditions persist in the US west, the level water is Lake Mead is decreasing rapidly, leading to some tragic findings.

Law enforcement officials reported on Monday 25 July that they found a fourth set of human remains at Lake Mead this summer. As a mega-draught takes hold in the West US, water levels at the Nevada lake have reached historic lows. Sadly, three out of four of the bodies were found as the quantity begins to sink more and more.

The news release put out by the National Parks Service (NPS) said that they “received a witness report of human remains discovered at Swim Beach in Lake Mead National Recreation Area at approximately 4:30 p.m. PST.” Rangers reported to the scene and the area has been blocked off. The body was taken to the Clark County Medical Examiner to investigated the cause of death.

How many bodies have been found?

On 4 May, the NPS released a statement that park-goers alerted rangers after they found “a barrel containing human remains.” Later the Las Vegas Metro Homicide told CNN that they believe the body belonged to a murder victim who was killed in the 1970s or 80s. An investigation is ongoing and no more information has been released, but some suspect it could be mob releated.

Just a few days later on 7 May, the NPS said that they received a report that a group had found “human skeletal remains [...] at Callville Bay.” The cause of death was not reported.

Then in early July, after the NPS had issued a missing persons report, a body was found “near the Boulder Islands on Lake Mead where an adult female went missing on June 30.” While, officials thought that it was possible that the remains belonged to the young woman who had gone missing, the identity of the cadaver has not been confirmed.

Most recently, the fourth body was found on Monday 25 July.

Water levels reach historic lows

There are some serious concerns with the low levels of water at Lake Mead and the Colorado River, which feeds the lake. The low water level issue, in part, caused by a historic two decade long mega draught in the region, led the federal government to issue a water shortage alert last year. There are several states that receive water from the Colorado River and the rights to that water has come under scrutiny.

Upper basin states which include Colorado, Utah, and Wyoming have said that they will not cut back on their usage because they already use less than what is rightfully theirs. These three states have looked to Arizona, California, and Nevada to make cuts, which may end up coming from Agriculture, which is sector that requires a large amount of water to be consumed in these states.

Second, Lake Mead feeds into the Hoover Dam and soon some scientists believe the water levels will get so low that the flow into the dam will stop. At only thirty percent capacity, that point may come much sooner than many think.


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