COVINGTON -- Sadly, the first drowning of the season occurred late Saturday afternoon, according to the Newton County Sheriff's Office.

NCSO Spokesman Lt. Mark Mitchell said a man he described as "an older gentleman," was found drowned by the Newton County Dive Team at Factory Shoals Park. Mitchell said the man's name and age would be released at a later date.

"The investigation is ongoing. Further information will be released when it becomes available," Mitchell said.

Mitchell said the family called the NCSO and reported the man missing late Saturday and deputies on patrol located his vehicle at Factory Shoals Park.

"Articles of clothing were also found in the area," Mitchell said. "We called out the dive team and he was located minutes after they went in."

Several drownings have previously occurred during the spring and summer months at Factory Shoals where the current washes rapidly over the rocks, especially following rainy weather.

"We just urge people to be careful on the shoals and in the water," Mitchell said. "The rains cause quick currents and swimmers should be cautious."