It can be difficult to spot a drowning person along West Michigan's crowded beaches.
GRAND HAVEN, Mich. (WZZM) -- Seeing the early signs of someone drowning can be easy to miss, especially on crowded West Michigan beachers.
Water rescue expert Vince Deur offered WZZM 13 News information on what to look for -- and how to act quickly.
Someone drowning is usually not yelling loudling with his or her arms flailing. A drowning victim is often silent and exhausted. The last sign of life is the person's head, and almost nothing else above the water's surface.
"Often, they're just going to be bobbing out of the water, mouth and eyes near water level, sometimes gasping for whatever air they can grab," says Deur.
If you're on the beach, keep your eyes on where they last went under, says Deur, then gather people on the beach and make a human chain quickly.
"Find a group of people and put the strongest tallest people and put them at the front of the line," he says.
The human chain should move with people's arms locked, walking through the water and scanning the bottom with their feet -- and their eyes, if they can see the bottom.
If you are alone on the beach and see someone in trouble, don't go in without holding onto something.
"First thing to do is call 911, but second look for any flotation device you can find," says Deur. "It could be child toys, boogie board, anything can find."
The flotation device will help you from being pulled under by the panicking victim.