Warmer weather, rain and melting snow are sure signs of spring. This also means ice conditions can be very dangerous on ponds, rivers and ditches. Rising water levels and spring run- off make for fast moving water and strong currents. As temperatures rise and the snowpack begins to melt and flow, it’s important to be aware of the potential hazards that can occur when standing or walking next to rivers and creeks, and what can happen to people if they fall into the water.
Parents and guardians should make sure children avoid playing near the banks, which can get undercut by the rushing water, causing the land to give way.
*Water does not have to be really deep to be dangerous! Child drowning can happen in as little as 20 seconds, even in water that is only inches deep.
*The force of running water measuring about two feet deep can present extreme challenges, for anyone, especially if a person falls down. Water will push you downstream and hold you there and you can’t get back up.
*Water temperatures are cold enough to induce hypothermia and cardiac arrest. Cold water causes one’s body temperature to drop extremely fast.