Some cruel decisions might have to be made this winter—when a person or an animal falls through some ice.
We’ve already heard some stories of people rescuing animals that have broken through ice on ponds or lakes…and if this is a typical winter, we’ll hear stories about people who fall through the ice somewhere.
The problem is—how to rescue a person or an animal in that situation without falling through the ice yourself.
Lieutenant Nick Humphrey of the Missouri Water Patrol says the first thing to remember–as hard as it might be to do it—"don’t endanger yourself."
Humphrey says the advice for summer water rescues is the same advice for winter water rescues–reach, throw, row, and go. He says the patrol urges would-be rescuers to try to reach the person in trouble with their hand or with a limb or a rod. If that doesn’t work, he suggests throwing something that floats to the person in the water and looking for a boat that could be paddled out to the person in trouble. If there are no other alternatives, he says, go for help.
Best thing, he says, is not to go out on the ice to begin with because Missouri’s weather is not often cold enough to freeze ice thick enough to be safe.
As for an animal, even a pet—-that involves a personal decision about whether it’s worth risking your life…and the futures of those who depend on you….to try to rescue an animal, even if it’s a beloved pet. Humphrey says it would not be that hard a decision to make.