7.09.2020

Naya Rivera of Glee likely died of Hydrogen Cyanide exposure leading to drowning

 EDIT: I think the major cause of death is now cold water shock, see bottom of this article for more info.  The hydrogen cyanide or hydrogen sulfide can be contributing factors as well.

Sadly I think I may have found out what contributed to Naya Rivera's Drowning.  A poisoning autopsy needs to be done.

The evidence we have is that her 4 year old boy has stated that he and his mom were swimming together and that she never got back to the boat.  Also that his mom jumped in the water and never came back up.


We also know that her son was found sleeping in the boat. While Sleepiness is a common symptom of cyanide poisoning.

We know that Lake Piru was in the cross-hairs of authorities for it's quagga mussel infestation.  We know authorities had been debating adding a "potassium solution" *(see explanation at the bottom) to poison the mussels which would also kill the fish and cause things that eat the fish to die as well.

Strangely this 2015 article above talking about the imminent poisoning of lake piru was taken down and we can only access it through an archive.  Do I smell a coverup?  If authorities did go ahead and poison the lake it would make sense they would want to erase all mention of this.

At the bottom of this post I detail how hydrogen cyanide could be produced in the lake and bubble to the surface.  But also here I want to explain how Hydrogen Sulfide also could be produced with the chemicals added to the lake.  Copper sulfate is proven and known to have been dumped in the lake in large amounts in 2019.  Many bacteria can reduce the sulfate in the lake into hydrogen sulfide.  Hydrogen sulfide, as opposed to hydrogen cyanide, is heavier than air and can concentrate on the surface of the lake.

Whether Hydrogen Sulfide or Hydrogen Cyanide or both is to blame is mostly irrelevant.  They both have similar highly poisonous effects that could have contributed to drownings on the lake.  Methods to test the theory could be a gas sniffer or also see if the lake smells of rotten eggs or sweet almond, but our nose looses sensitivity quickly so not many people may be able to smell it.

This would mean that hydrogen cyanide and/or hydrogen sulfide exposure in the lake could have been an exacerbating cause in her drowning.  We also know that low visibility in the water (only 6-10 inches - video-) could have also been a contributing factor.

When you jump in the water several things can go wrong.  If you land awkwardly you can get shocked and disoriented.  If there is low visibility in the water you may not be able to quickly discern which way is up and not know which way to go.  Couple that with low level cyanide exposure (especially if hydrogen cyanide gas is the culprit since the cyanide in the entire lake would all bubble up to the surface) which can cause confusion, weakness, and sleepiness, and you have a recipe for disaster.

Lets hope that the family completes a toxicology autopsy and gets to the root cause of their daughters death and can prevent future incidents like this from happening.

*Turns out this potassium solution is really just Potassium Chloride so it is harmless to humans.  However it appears that massive amounts of industrial Copper Sulfate was actually dumped in the lake, and this copper sulfate might have had cyanide contamination if it was recovered from mining
After "removing the cyanide" from the copper/gold solutions from mining, the metals are exposed to sulfuric acid which creates copper sulfate which can be recovered (and sold as industrial copper sulfate).  It may undoubtedly contain traces of cyanide from the previous process and when you are dumping tons of the chemical into waterways, the total cyanide is potentially catastrophic.

The lake needs to be tested for dangerous chemicals including Cyanide, sulfide, and others. If it tests high then signs need to be posted and the public notified.  Even small amounts of cyanide in the water can outgas as Hydrogen Cyanide gas concentrating on the surface of the lake, putting everyone on the lake at risk. 

For completeness sake, Cold Water Shock could have also played a huge factor in this.  Lake Piru is around 65 degrees f. We know her son said they were swimming together and she didn't make it back to the boat and also that she jumped in and never came back up.  Cold water shock is a very common cause of drowning and can happen when someone jumps in water that is under 70 degrees f.  So a big part of what happened could be this.  They are swimming together in the water.  Naya gets out and sunbathes on the boat a bit while her son swims back to the boat.  When she gets hot she dives in the water to cool off.  She may have dived into a column of cold water, perhaps 60f and she is hit with cold water shock and reflexively breathes in water and can't make it back to the surface.

If you ever jump into potentially cold water below 70f, never dive, always jump in and immediately spread out your arms and legs and tread water and try to stay on the surface as you reflexively gasp for air.

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