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Search continues for diver believed drowned in Otis Reservoir

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Updated: 6/24/2013 10:48 pm

OTIS, Mass. – Dive teams sent to the Otis Reservoir Sunday afternoon resume their search Monday after receiving reports that a young man may have drowned.

The Pittsfield Fire Department responded to the scene at approximately 2 p.m. Saturday. A Berkshire County Sheriff dive team and State Police were also on the scene in what remained a rescue effort when the search was postponed at 9 p.m. Sunday night.

Authorities say on Saturday a man in his twenties, his father, and a friend set out on the Otis Reservoir to go fishing. The father and son decided to go swimming, but the son started to struggle, officials say his father attempted to help him.

Dive crews have been searching underwater and using sonar to try and find him. Fire Chief Sandy Pinkham says neither men were wearing life jackets, which could have saved the man.

"It's very dangerous, I mean if you're out on a boat you should be wearing a life jacket even if you’re an accomplished swimmer,” said Pinkham.

The Hinsdale Fire Department, State Police, Berkshire County Sheriff's Office and Otis Rescue were on the scene Monday morning to resume the search of the young man. Officials now believe, however, that he has likely drowned, making the search a recovery effort.

Family and friends of the man were heartbroken as crews continued to come back to shore with no sign of him.

Officials are not yet releasing the man’s identity.

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