3 drown in Lake Michigan since Thursday

It has been a dangerous couple of days on the water. Three men have lost their lives out there since Thursday and The National Weather Service has put the swim risk at a high level as Lake Michigan churns up life threatening waves and currents.

Rocky conditions are making it difficult for jet skis to stay on tops of the water, but even harder for those without a craft.

"Knowing what happened in previous events, yea, I was kind of nervous," said Kourtni Brandy who was swimming at 31st Street Beach Sunday afternoon.

It has been three days since a man jumped in to try to save his daughter after she slipped on a walking path. Renee Padilla was 35 years old.

The Coast Guard is advising people to stay off walking paths along the lakefront for now.

"We had a very wet spring and we're actually at record lake levels for most of the lakes. I believe Lake Michigan is about a foot higher than what it was at this time last year. So that can increase the amount of rip currents and rip tides," said Coast Guard Petty Officer Brian McCrum.

It's unclear why a 26 year old man drowned near Fullerton. William Garcia-Ruiz and another man jumped in this morning. The other man got out okay. Also today, the body of 29 year old Michael Fernandez was recovered in the Lincoln Park Lagoon. He'd gone in to try to save his dog. All things considered, the Lifetime Chicago Triathlon cancelled the swim portion due to unfavorable conditions.

Despite the recent drownings, people are continuing to play in the waves.

"The staff that's here is wonderful and I keep an eye on her, make sure she doesn't get too close to the break wall, so not a concern at all. We love waves," said Monica Hagerty.

"We come like every week, every Sunday basically. Have you seen the waves as harsh at this? Not that big. That's the first time but we have the same in France. The best is here. You don't have the salt, so the water is not salty. So it's amazing," said Loic Lhermite.
And Chicago is not alone in this. In Waukegan yesterday, 14 people fell off their boat and the waves also overturned a jet skier.