Boy dies after friends encouraged him to jump into canal to conquer his fear of water


Rafael Pizarro and the Rochdale Canal 
By: Chan Yuan

Attempts to help a friend conquer his fears of water backfired when the young teenager died.

The boy of the United Kingdom, who did not know how to swim, drowned after he jumped into a canal in an attempt to overcome his fear of water.

13-year-old Rafael Pizarro jumped into the Rochdale Canal in Manchester, together with his friends.

An inquest heard that the friends counted down together before jumping into water.

However, Pizarro panicked when he found himself in the middle of the 9-foot-wide canal. He began waving his arms in a desperate attempt to get out of the water.

Three friends tried to save him, but Pizarro disappeared underwater. A witness came to his aid and pulled the teenager out of the water.

He was rushed to a hospital, where he died nine days later with his family at his side.

Rafael's mother Maria called on the Canal & River Trust to do more to warn the people of the dangers of jumping into the water after it emerged that there were no warning signs in the area.