Daily Plant Masthead

Volume XXV, Number 5334
Monday, Jan 24, 2011

Ice Rescue Training At Lasker Rink

An Urban Park Ranger begins the practice rescue at Lasker Rink;
An Urban Park Ranger begins the practice rescue at Lasker Rink;
Photo by Daniel Avila

On January 7 at Lasker Rink in Central Park, Parks & Recreation's Directors of the Parks Academy trained Urban Park Service and Maintenance and Operations staff on how to conduct an ice rescue in case of an emergency. The first part of the class was strictly verbal instructions including how to check the ice thickness, assess dangers, and identify hypothermia, as well as how to make a set of ice rescue claws. Following the lecture, the class went out onto the ice and practiced ice rescue techniques such as self rescue, one and two person rescue, forming a human chain, and using the rescue ladders.

* Even ponds and lakes that appear to be solidly frozen can be unsafe.

* Ice must be at least six inches thick before it can sustain the weight of a person, and to freeze to the right thickness, the temperature must be well below freezing for weeks.

* Moreover, ice strength is affected by the depth of the water, the size of the water body, the water's chemistry, the distribution of weight on the ice, and local climatic factors.

* To remind people of the dangers of thin ice, Parks & Recreation posts warning signs along the perimeter of the City's lakes and ponds. Special ladders are also installed around the edges for trained personnel to use in the event of an emergency.

* Should the ice become strong enough, Parks will designate safe-skating areas in large spray shower basins and other shallow water spots throughout the five boroughs. Signs will be clearly posted to show that these areas are safe for winter sports. For locations and times of winter activities in New York City parks, visit www.nyc.gov/parks or call 311.


"If I had a world of my own, everything would be nonsense. Nothing would be what it is, because everything would be what it isn't. And contrary wise, what is, it wouldn't be. And what it wouldn't be, it would. You see?"

Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland

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