Near-Drowning Victim in Critical Condition After Incident at Lynchburg YMCA

Lynchburg, VA - Lynchburg police say a man who technically drowned at the Jamerson YMCA Wednesday night remains in critical condition at the hospital.

When emergency crews got to Wyndhurst, that man was dead. He wasn't breathing and didn't have a pulse. But because of the quick action of life guards and EMS workers, they were able to bring him back to life.

Emergency officials say around 7 p.m., a man in his 30s was swimming in the Y's lap pool when he lost consciousness and sank to the bottom. Lifeguards immediately pulled him from the water and began CPR.

When Lynchburg EMS workers arrived six minutes later, they restored his pulse and got him breathing. He was taken to Lynchburg General Hospital where police say he's listed in critical condition.

The Battalion Chief says at least 50 % of the patients they resuscitate make it to the hospital alive, a success rate that's nearly double the national average. She says timeliness and training are key.

"This is great work. We have a tendency to overlook, any business has a tendency to overlook the good things, when you're trying to find ways to improve. This makes me proud to work here," said Heather Childress.

Of course surviving to the hospital is only part of the battle. In Lynchburg, only 11 to 13 % of patients who are resuscitated will end up walking out.

The YMCA did release a statement Thursday. The CEO says safety remains its primary concern, they're conducting an investigation, and their thoughts and prayers go out to the member and their family.