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Some Baltimore City Council members want to examine Inner Harbor safety after man's death

Two Baltimore City Council members on Thursday said the city should examine safety measures along the waterfront after a man fell into the harbor and died earlier this month.

Councilman Zeke Cohen, whose district includes much of the waterfront in the southeast part of the city, said the man’s death “drives home the need to rethink safety as it relates to water.”

“Folks bike, they walk, they even run and I know there have been questions about putting up railings or fences or whatever,” Cohen said. “It’s a question worth engaging.”

Visiting businessman Ryan Schroeder, 26, fell into the water near the Barnes and Noble bookstore in the early hours of Feb 1. He was pulled out after 40 minutes but declared dead at Maryland Shock Trauma.

Schroeder’s parents have called on city officials to improve waterfront safety by putting up guard rails and visited the spot where he died on Wednesday.

Councilwoman Mary Pat Clarke recalled previous discussions about waterfront safety after other tragedies, but said nothing had ever materialized. Clarke said she had long been concerned about the potential for someone to fall in the water and get trapped under a walkway.

It is time to revisit the issue, she said.

“It’s not just open water,” Clarke added. “It’s water with a ceiling.”

Schroeder’s parents met with representatives of Mayor Catherine Pugh, whose office said a review into his death has started.

Council President Bernard C. “Jack” Young plans to await the findings of that review before he determines what he thinks should happen next, his spokesman said.

iduncan@baltsun.com

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