Council breaks up ice on ponds after concerns raised about skaters

Arctic conditions in recent days have caused bodies of water to freeze as snow and ice swept across Scotland.

Glasgow City Council breaks up ice at Queen’s Park pond after concerns raised about ice skating STV News

Ice is being broken around ponds in Glasgow to prevent people from walking or skating on them after concerns were raised over people falling into freezing water.

Arctic conditions in recent days have caused bodies of water to freeze as snow and ice swept across Scotland.

On Thursday, a Glasgow City Council vehicle was seen breaking up ice which had formed on the pond at Queen’s Park.

It comes after a six-year-old boy became the fourth child to die after falling into an icy lake in Solihull on Sunday.

West Midlands Police said the boys were brothers Samuel Butler, six, and Finlay Butler, eight, their cousin Thomas Stewart, 11, and Jack Johnson, ten.

The Queen’s Park pond, when frozen over, has become a popular spot for skaters to show off their skills as temperatures plunge below freezing.

However, concerns have been raised by locals in recent days after an incident in Solihull where four boys lost their lives after falling through a frozen lake into icy water last weekend.

The council said they are monitoring frozen ponds on a daily basis and have urged people not to set foot on the ice.

A spokesman said: “We are very concerned about people going on to frozen water in parks across the city.

“No matter how solid ice might look, no one can be sure of the stability of any ice and so it is impossible to guarantee that any ice can be used safely.

“As tempting as it might be to do otherwise, people should not skate, attempt to cross, walk or play on ponds, or any other frozen water.

“Even though very cold weather is forecast, people are urged to stay safe and stay off the ice.

“Signage warning people to keep off the ice has been put up in city parks and staff have also been breaking ice around ponds to make them as inaccessible as possible.”

The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service has also issued advice about avoiding bodies of frozen water.

Scottish Fire and Rescue Service Area Commander for Prevention and Protection, David Dourley, said: “Following the tragic events of the weekend, our thoughts are very much with the families, friends and local communities at this sad time.

“We strongly urge everyone to please be aware of the dangers of frozen water. We know the ice can look inviting but do not be tempted to walk on ice. It can easily crack and cause a person to fall through.

“Don’t wander too near to the edge, icy conditions could cause you to slip and fall in and don’t be tempted to test how solid the water is.

“Adults should set a good example by staying off the ice and we also ask that parents, carers and guardians ensure children are aware of the dangers of frozen water.

“We don’t want your winter walk to end in tragedy so please avoid going near frozen water when you are out with loved ones and pets.”

Advice for anyone who gets into trouble in frozen water is to try to conserve their energy by keeping as still as possible while waiting for help.

It added that people should be aware of the dangers of cold-water shock which can be brought about by low temperatures, which can cause breathing difficulties, blood vessels to close and heart rate to increase – which can lead to a heart attack.

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