More skeletal remains – the fifth so far this year – were found in Lake Mead as water levels deteriorated, the National Parks Service said Tuesday.
Rangers discovered the remains near the Swim Beach area of the lake, which sits between Nevada and Arizona, on Monday night, and are still working to recover them, according to the parks service.
Multiple sets of human remains, dozens of sunken boats, trash, and baby strollers have been found on the edge of the lake this summer as water levels sit at their lowest since the reservoir was first filled.
On May 1, a barrel containing human remains that police said was probably dumped in the 1970s or 1980s was found near Hemenway Harbor, and more remains were discovered on the shoreline by paddleboarders a week later. Partial human remains were found in the Boulder Beach area on July 25.
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The fourth skeletal remains were found at Swim Beach on Aug. 7, in the same area where the most recent set was discovered.
Tuesday’s announcement comes as federal officials announced Arizona and Nevada will face cuts in the amount of water they can draw from the Colorado River amid a severe and enduring drought. Lake Mead is the country’s largest man-made reservoir that serves as a vital source of water for the Colorado River.
Lake Mead’s water level has plummeted to less than a quarter full and is inching dangerously close to a point where not enough water would flow to produce hydroelectric power at the Hoover Dam on the Nevada-Arizona border.