Fourth set of human remains found in Lake Mead

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Human remains were found again in Lake Mead, the nation’s largest reservoir that continues to shrink amid a decades-long drought, officials announced Sunday.

According to the National Park Service, someone made the discovery at the park’s swimming beach at Lake Mead National Recreation Area on the Nevada side around 11:15 a.m. Saturday. This is the fourth time since May that human remains have been found in Lake Mead, where water levels continue to recede to historic levels.

With the help of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department dive team, park rangers responded and set up a perimeter to recover the remains, the NPS said.

Officials have said water levels in the reservoir are so low they could reach “dead pool” status, meaning the water is too low to flow downstream.

The minimum water surface level needed to generate power at Hoover Dam is 1,050 feet, according to the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation. Anything below that is considered a “dormant pool,” and a “dead pool” exists when the water level reaches 895 feet, according to the federal agency.

Satellite images released last month by NASA show side-by-side comparisons of Lake Mead, one taken on July 6, 2000, and the other more than two decades later, on July 6 of this year.

Images released by NASA show the loss of water in Lake Mead, Nevada on July 3, 2022 from July 6, 2000.


The result of the decrease in the water level is that human bodies and parts have been emerging.

Human skeletal remains were found near the lake’s Callville Bay on May 7, according to the National Park Service. The discovery came a week after a man’s decomposing body was found in a steel barrel near the reservoir’s Hemenway Fishing Pier, more than 20 miles from Callville Bay, according to the LVMPD.

Human remains were also found on Swim Beach on July 25.

Officials began an investigation into the most recent discovery Saturday, and the Clark County Medical Examiner has been contacted to determine the cause of death.

ABC News’ Julia Jacobo contributed to this report.

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