THE BRONX - City officials have introduced new safety measures at parks near the waterfront after two boys drowned in the Bronx River in June.
Cousins Wellington Gabin and Erickson Villa, both 13, were pulled from the Bronx River at Starlight Park. Villa was pronounced dead at the scene. Gabin died a few days later at the Children’s Hospital at Montefiore.
Loved ones have since pleaded for more safety measures to prevent future tragedies.
The Parks Department has installed gates that are self-closing, but not self-locking at parks by the water, such as Renaissance Park in Hunts Point. New throwable safety rings have been put into place at parks and “No Swimming, No Diving” signs have been installed.
Officials say emergency call boxes are also being installed in the coming weeks.
Seven other parks near the water across the five boroughs also received the new water safety techniques.