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Stay safe - don’t skate on thin ice

Picture John Devlin 11/01/10.  Cumbernauld. GV of Broadwood loch frozen over.Council estate worker, Ronnie Comrie, erecting sign.

Picture John Devlin 11/01/10. Cumbernauld. GV of Broadwood loch frozen over.Council estate worker, Ronnie Comrie, erecting sign.

With colder months ahead of us this winter the police are warning people to be careful around frozen water when they are out and about.

Figures from the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents show that last year 60 people drowned in Scotland - many of them fell through ice into water.

Constable Alex Moore of Kirkintilloch Police, said; “As we have experienced severe cold winters over the past few years which have lead to ponds, reservoirs, lakes and canals freezing over, venturing onto these areas can have fatal results, while many others have had to be rescued and revived.

“Looking at past incidents it appears that children and males of all ages are most at risk. Children are obviously attracted to frozen lakes and canals as they present natural ice skating opportunities.

“It might be tempting to walk or play on the frozen water but the ice can easily break.

“Parents, guardians and teachers must remind children and young people NEVER to venture onto frozen water. Even if it appears thick from the bank, it becomes thinner very quickly.

“Adults can set a good example by staying off the ice yourselves.

“However, over 50 per cent of ice related drownings involved an attempted rescue of another person or a dog. In many instances the dog managed to scramble ashore unaided while the owner did not.

“It is therefore sensible not to throw sticks or balls for dogs near frozen water and if they do get into trouble, not to attempt to rescue them by venturing onto the ice.

“The temperature of the water is cold enough to take your breath away, which can lead to panic and drowning.

“The coldness can make your arms and legs numb which means you can’t control them and can’t swim. It can lead to hypothermia - serious reduction in your body temperature - which can cause heart failure. This happens to even the strongest swimmers.”

 

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