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City officials warn of the dangers of walking on frozen ponds, lakes

OKLAHOMA CITY – City officials are warning you of the dangers that come with walking on frozen ponds.

Officials say it could be a deadly mistake.

According to OKC Parks Natural Resources Manager Scott Copelin, visitors to Oklahoma City parks have been walking onto ice covered ponds and lakes during the bitter cold temperatures last week.

“You can see footprint tracks on the ice in some parks, and in one case a large trash can was dragged to the middle of one of our ponds,” said Copelin. “That’s dangerous. Not only is it getting warmer now, but it’s impossible to tell how thick the ice is. It’s easy to fall through.”

Cold water can quickly drop someone’s body temperature to an unsafe level and can weaken the energy it takes to stay afloat. It increases the risk of drowning and hypothermia.

“Chances are, you won’t be able to pull yourself out of the water and back onto the ice,” said Fire Lt. Josh Pearcy. “You only have a few minutes before you’ll become numb and cold, and your breath gets taken away.”

Officials say you should never walk onto ice covering any body of water.

Always call 911 for help if you see someone fall through ice into a pond or lake.