UTAH LAKE, Utah — The search continues into the night for two teenagers who went tubing on Utah Lake Wednesday.
Priscilla Bienkowski and Sophia Hernandez are believed to have been in the Knolls area, on the southwest side of the lake.
On Thursday, the search area grew to eight square miles.
“It’s a huge area,” said Utah County Sheriff Spencer Cannon.
Crews believe the two friends went out on the lake Wednesday afternoon, after purchasing float tubes at Walmart.
Hours later, strong winds picked up which can be capable of causing up to eight foot waves. The water temperature is 57 degrees.
The tubes were meant for swimming pool and not the rough waters of Utah Lake. They certainly weren’t stable enough to be used as a floatation device, said Sgt. Spencer Cannon.
“The thing that everyone is thinking is what nobody wants to say. But when you’ve been involved in a lot of circumstances, it’s hard to not think of those possibilities,” said Sgt. Cannon.
Crews found the tubes Wednesday night. A cell phone and keys were found on the shore. Their car was parked nearby.
“We hold out hope even if it is just a sliver of hope,” Sgt. Cannon said.
State park crews will continue until midnight tonight. The full team will be back Friday at 8 a.m.