Vernon Search and Rescue has safety tips for those venturing out on frozen bodies of water – Vernon News

Be careful on frozen lakes

The cold has enticed some people to sharpen their knives and head for the lake to skate outdoors.

And while it may not be much more Canadian than women’s hockey, people are encouraged to be careful on the frozen water.

Coralie Nairn, along with Vernon Search and Rescue, said the ice should be at least four to six inches thick before heading out, and she reminds people that the closer they get to open water, the thinner the ice will be .

“Closer to shore are typically thicker ice,” Nairn said, adding that VSAR even encourages people to wear a personal buoyancy device if they skate on a lake.

“If they were to break through and fall into the lake, self-rescue is really important.”

Wearing winter clothes and skates would make swimming extremely difficult.

Hypothermia can also occur rapidly in water, endangering life.

The shock from the cold water can send the person into ventricular fibrillation and possibly a heart attack.

And the ice thickness varies in different areas.

“With the water movement, it’s not a uniform depth and thickness. You can be at what you think is a good six inches, but 20 feet away it can be two inches,” she warned.

“The color of the ice is crucial. If it’s frost, has slush on it, frozen slush or standing water on the ice, you want to avoid them at all costs.”

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