UPDATE: McMinn County Sheriff's Office says watering hole where - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

UPDATE: McMinn County Sheriff's Office says watering hole where man drowned is unsafe

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MCMINN COUNTY, TN (WRCB) -

A swimming hole in McMinn County is under a microscope after a man jumped from a bluff  Tuesday night and drowned.

Warren Dougherty had climbed up a bluff at the Blue Cove Quarry in McMinn County, to ride the zip line down into the water. "But the equipment wasn't there and I guess just as an afterthought he just jumped in," said

As he fell 100 feet, he disappeared into 90 feet of water. "He never resurfaced," said McMinn County Sheriff Joe Guy.

Sheriff Guy says anyone jumping from bluffs should be mindful of the elevation and they believe Dougherty's fall and impact into the water was his cause of death. "You do have to take into consideration the height because that could be dangerous and maybe he just miscalculated the height."

This quarry has been on the sheriff department's radar for some time. They say it's a popular place, that isn't safe. "The gentleman that operates it allows alcohol to be brought in and doesn't check I.D's," said Guy.

Sheriff Guy says his deputies have gone out to the property to check for underage drinking and drugs. Guy admits there aren't a lot of regulations when it comes to watering holes, but believes the water is unsanitary. "He does charge a fee if you want to swim or float around, but he lets people float around on basically pieces of garbage," said Guy.

Property owner Charlie Womack has even been cited on numerous occasions by the Health Department for not having a properly sewage system in place and for hosting a snack bar that wasn't meeting regulations.

Guy says as long as this place is operating improperly, bad things could keep happening. "It's not somewhere I'd let my children go or anybody go. It's very dangerous and poorly managed and it's not a good place to go," said Guy.

We stopped by the property, the owners said they had no comment on the drowning or how they operate their facility.

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