St. Louis residents warned, thin ice on frozen ponds can be deadly

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St. Louis — Because it’s been cold, some ponds and other bodies of water around St. Louis are frozen over. However, the ice is not safe to walk on. Playing on a frozen pond is dangerous.

The Farmer’s Almanac says that the ice should be at least four inches thick. It is possible to fall through thin ice if you are traversing on it. It’s not easy to get back out of the ice after falling through it. You might get stuck under the ice shelf.

If someone falls through the ice, don’t try to save them yourself. Instead, call 911. The Missouri Department of Public Safety says to throw something to the victim to help them stay afloat. You could stretch a ladder, throw a rope, a tree branch, or even jumper cables. Once the person is out of the water, they will need dry clothes. If you can’t get them dry clothes, keep the wet clothes on to help keep their body heat in. The victim should be taken the hospital if its deemed necessary.

The MDPS says is that you can’t tell how strong and safe ice is just by looking at it or by the checking the weather. The consistency of the ice can change because of sunlight, changing weather, and other things.

In some places it can be several inches thick, while in others it can be very thin. With slush or snow on top of the ice, it’s dangerous because the snow hides weak spots.

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You shouldn’t walk out on the ice until you can measure at least four inches of clear, solid ice from several different spots. Start taking measurements where the water is not too deep. Do not walk on the ice if it is less than three inches thick where it is thin.

Parents need to keep an eye on their kids while they play on the ice if you do go out on it. Kids should always have a life jacket on, and you should never leave them alone on the ice. Bring someone with you, wear a life jacket, and bring safety gear, like a cell phone, in case something goes wrong.

When you’re near frozen water, always keep your pets on a leash. If your pet falls through the ice, don’t try to save it. Instead, call 9-1-1 or go get help. Do not go on the white ice. Since white ice has air and snow in it, it is not as strong. Do not step on the river ice. Currents can quickly change how thick ice is, which makes it more easily broken.


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