Columbus fire department trains for icy pond rescues

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by Johnny Archer

WHAS11.com

Posted on January 9, 2013 at 1:54 PM

Updated Wednesday, Jan 9 at 2:33 PM

COLUMBUS, Ind. (WHAS11) -- In the cold temperature of January, the Columbus Fire Department in Indiana performed an ice rescue at a frozen pond in Mill Race Park. The "victim" was the city’s mayor, Kristen Brown but, Wednesday’s rescue was only a drill to hopefully save lives in the future.

At least two area deaths have been attributed to icy waters in the past two years. It became a priority issue for Mayor Brown when she took office last January.

Firefighters are able to access the cold water with special equipment the department received last year.

“There are all kinds of ponds and lakes, rivers, streams; there are all kinds of bodies of waters around,” Russell Hardin with the Columbus Fire Department said.

There are 161 ponds and lakes in Columbus, Indiana alone and hundreds more in and around Kentuckiana. Fire officials in Columbus suggest that you stay off of frozen water completely in the area because the stability is too unpredictable.

“Ice is a dangerous thing,” Hardin said. “It is too dangerous to be on it. If you want to go on it, go to an ice skating rink. Nobody has ever fallen through an ice skating rink.”

Local emergency officials say a typical winter in the area does not get cold enough to make enough solid ice for walking, meaning there is no such thing as safe ice in the area.
 

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