As questions continue to swirl and a New Jersey community grieves the loss of two brothers at a school's indoor pool, more details have come to light regarding how they may have drowned while lifeguards were on duty.
The president of the Bayonne school board told NBC New York over the phone that there are two pools in the Lincoln Community School facility: the main pool where the community swim was held, and a smaller dive pool that is very deep.
It is possible that the two pools are connected, but the dive pool was closed and lifeguards were watching just the main pool — where everyone who was at the community swim event was supposed to be.
The two teen brothers, 16-year-old Jack Jiang and 19-year-old Chu Ming Zheng, drowned in that side dive pool, the school board official said. However, it was not immediately clear how the pair ended up in that pool.
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The brothers, one a recent graduate of Bayonne High School and the younger currently enrolled as a junior there, were found unresponsive at the pool facility just before 8:30 p.m. Wednesday night at the school on Avenue E, School Superintendent John Niesz said.
The elder brother had just completed his freshman year at the University of Miami, while the younger was slated to start his senior year at the high school in the fall. Both knew how to swim.
A city official said that the indoor pool was open at night for community use, and three lifeguards were on duty. A three rushed to aid the brothers with CPR, and they were later rushed to nearby Bayonne Medical Center, but it was too late. A parent said that the community swim hours are typically crowded.
The brothers' 11-year-old sister saw the incident unfold, an official said. A Bayonne official said that the family is Chinese-American, and there were some communication issues during the emergency response.
What happened inside the school pool during the evening community swim is being looked at by police, OSHA and an outside investigator hired by the board of education. Bayonne Mayor Jimmy Davis urged patience before jumping to conclusions.
"You gotta give the police department time, the board of education is going to do their investigation, OSHA will do an investigation, and the board of education will also have an independent investigation into it," said Davis. "So we will know what happened but that will take time."
The pool will be closed until further notice as the investigation continues.