River Freshney's hidden perils could claim lives of young people
THE River Freshney has hidden perils that could claim the lives of young people.
That is the warning from a senior fire officer who led a training exercise.
Watch manager for Humberside Fire and Rescue Service, Colin Bovill said even hardy firefighters in thermal under clothing and specialist water rescue suits found the Freshney tough going.
The exercise, on Sunday evening at the New Catergate end of the river, saw nine crew members involved in a water rescue.
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It took place close to a tree which has a rope swing hanging from it, made by young people.
Watch manager Bovill said: "People need to be aware there are dangers and trip hazards. We used thermal clothing which keeps the guys and girls as warm as possible and special suits with inflatable aids and other specialist equipment. Even then they were still feeling the cold.
"A child in shorts or jeans is not going to last long before getting hypothermia. Kids think it is easy to get across, but even with three of our crew forming a link, it was still tough going.
"With spring and summer days coming up we would rather people experienced water sports at Scartho Baths than in the Freshney. It is not a playground. People need to be aware of the dangers. There are trip hazards and it would be easy for a child to twist an ankle or bang their head and get swept away."
Mr Bovill said the Humberside service had a responsibility to train using water rescue techniques and give crew members as much experience as possible.
He said: "We are keen to have the best-trained firefighters and rescuers and we ran through the procedures for that type of incident."
Crew members from Cromwell Road fire station also hauled a shopping trolley out of the river.