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Keep Off and Away from Frozen Water

With the cold snap continuing, Derbyshire’s Firefighters are appealing to people to keep off and away from areas of frozen water.  

As temperatures drop, open water can freeze creating a dangerous and potentially fatal situation.  

Watch Manager Gavin Learmonth said “In December 2022 sadly we witnessed just how dangerous frozen open water can be when tragically four children died after falling through the ice at Babbs Mill Lake in Solihull.  

“With temperatures dropping below zero, we need to remind everyone of the dangers associated with frozen ponds, lakes and other open water to ensure people stay safe. In 2019 44% of people who accidentally drowned had no intention of entering the water.  

“I’d like to ask parents to speak to younger children about the dangers of playing on ice and ask that everyone takes a few minutes to read our winter water safety advice.” 

Winter Water Safety Advice   

  • Never go onto frozen water – no matter how solid and safe it may look  

  • Ensure children are aware of the dangers of playing on frozen ponds, lakes and other open water 

  • Never enter open water to help anyone in difficulty – call 999 immediately 

  • Keep dogs on leads when near open water. Never venture onto the ice to help a dog in distress. Call 999 immediately.  

  • If out walking, running or walking a dog, keep away from the water's edge. Paths and riverbanks will be icy, slippery and may be unstable.  

Float to Live  

If you do find yourself in water, try to resist the urge to panic.   

Lay on your back, float with your arms and legs out like a star, calm your breathing and shout for help.   

No matter what the circumstances, if a person, or animal is in difficulty – do not attempt to enter the water to rescue them – call 999 immediately.  

For more information about keeping safe, visit