River Debris

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Woody debris increases river hazards 

Heavy winter storms and the Mosquito Fire of 2022 have contributed to dangerous conditions in the American River this year. Debris, such as downed trees and brush, has washed into the river, creating new hazards downstream. 

Strainers and sieves - such as tree branches, rocks and logs - only allow water to pass through, pinning people who are swept into them. When a person is trapped by a strainer, they can be held underwater, struggle to break free or be pinned against the object. This can lead to drowning or serious injury. 

When possible, avoid areas with debris or strainers, and be aware of more dangerous conditions downstream. Swimming in the American River is discouraged at this time due to the amount of debris in the water. It is also important to be aware of the current and take appropriate precautions.