MANCHESTER, NH – Rescuers spent several hours searching the Merrimack River for a man who reportedly went under the water while attempting to swim across.
At about 5:30 p.m. Manchester police and fire departments received many 911 calls reporting a man had jumped from the Queen City Bridge. However once at the scene, it was learned that a 34-year-old man had disappeared under the water while attempting to swim across. A woman identified by fire officials as “an acquaintance” told police the man had been drinking, and also may have used drugs before entering the water.
The woman told fire officials she last saw him struggling in the middle of the river north of the Queen City Bridge and she recruited the help of two men from the nearby homeless camp to use their canoe to attempt to locate the drowning man.
Bedford Police and Manchester Fire launched a total of five boats and patrolled the river from behind the Northeast Delta Dental Stadium to the I-293 bridge. NH State Police assisted in the search, and a DHART helicopter was also dispatched to get a view of the river from the air.
The search was called for darkness at about 7:30 p.m. NH Fish and Game and Marine Patrol will continue a recovery mission in the morning with divers in the area of the bridge.