College Student Dies After Drowning in Buffalo River


NEWTON COUNTY, Ark. (KNWA)– A 22-year-old college student is dead after drowning at a popular swimming hole in Newton County.

The young man was an international student at North Arkansas College in Harrison.

22-year old Allen Buberwa of Tanzania was standing on a river bank in Pruitt and slipped, falling into what the Newton County Sheriff’s Office is calling “high” waters.

This happened around six p.m. last night.

After failed rescue attempts from his friends, the Newton County coroner pronounced Buberwa dead around 11 p.m., shortly after divers located his body.

To ensure safety, the National Park Service emphasizes the importance of wearing a life jacket and swimming in groups–especially when heavy rain causes debris to fall into the river.

With heavy rains and possible flash flooding set to hit Northwest Arkansas again tomorrow morning, the Washington County Department of Emergency Management said it’s vital to stay alert during severe weather.

“Everyone needs to be proactive, and just be aware of what’s going on as far as weather, what the conditions are, and where they’re at, and just keep monitoring it,” said Deputy Director Kyle Curry.

If you’re planning a trip to the river, it’s a good idea to check the water’s conditions before heading out.

You can find a link with how to do that here.

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