Longmeadow Fire Department: What to do if you or someone else falls through ice

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LONGMEADOW, Mass. (WWLP) – The Longmeadow Fire Department has some important tips regarding ice safety.

Fire Chief John Dearborn said in Longmeadow, they do not inspect the ice and cannot guarantee its safety.

“With up and down temperatures this winter, the safety of ice on our ponds is certainly questionable,” Fire Chief Dearborn said. “Is pond ice ever safe? The answer is NO.”

If you witness someone fall through ice

Chief Dearborn said if you witness a person or animal fall through the ice, act fast because minutes count.

  • Call 911
  • Tell the person to remain calm and hold on to the ice
  • Try to reach the victim with a stick, rope, or another object from the shore and have them hold on
  • If the person goes underwater, make sure you know exactly where they went under

Dearborn says if you try to go out on the ice to rescue a person or an animal yourself, you will also likely fall through and become a victim.

If you fall through ice

If you are out on the ice alone and fall through, Dearborn said it is important to remain calm.

  • Do not panic
  • Attempt to get help by yelling
  • Turn toward the direction you came from
  • Place your hands and arms on the ice and place your body against the edge of the ice
  • Kick with your legs to push you forward out of the water, onto the ice
  • Remain lying down to keep your weight evenly distributed
  • Roll away from the hole and crawl back toward the shore
  • Call 911

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