Safety Advice

Never venture onto frozen ponds and lakes, now matter how safe it looks

If you see someone fall through the ice:

  1. Shout for assistance and send for the emergency services - call 999 or 112 - it's a free call from any phone
  2. Stay off the ice
  3. Shout to the casualty to keep still
  4. Try and reach them from the bank using a rope, pole, a tree branch, clothing tied together or anything else that extends your reach
  5. When reaching for the bank, lie down to avoid being pulled onto the ice
  6. If you cannot reach them, slide something that floats like a rescue buoy across the ice for them to hold on to stay afloat
  7. If the casualty is out of reach, wait for the emergency services while calming and reassuring them

After the casualty has been rescued from the ice:

  1. Make sure the ambulance is on its way
  2. Lay them flat, check their breathing and pulse and begin resuscitation if necessary
  3. Prevent them from getting colder by putting them in a sleeping bag or covering them including their head, with blankets or spare clothing
  4. Get them under shelter out of the cold
  5. Until the casualty is in a warm place do not undress them
  6. Do not rub their skin, apply hot water or give an alcoholic drink
  7. Keep them wrapped up so that they warm up gradually

If you fall through the ice:

  1. Keep calm and call for help
  2. If no help is available spread your arms across the surface of the ice
  3. If the ice is strong enough kick your legs and slide onto the ice
  4. Lie flat and pull yourself to the bank
  5. If the ice is very thin, break it in front of you and make your way to the shore
  6. If you cannot climb out, wait for help keeping as still as possible
  7. Press your arms by your side and keep your legs together
  8. Once you are safe, go to hospital immediately for a check up

Last updated: Friday 26 July 2013