The Saskatchewan branch of the Lifesaving Society is encouraging residents to be careful near bodies of water this summer.
The warning comes after the Water Security Agency reported rising water levels in both the North and South Saskatchewan River caused by high amounts of rain in parts of Alberta. The society’s CEO Shelby Rushton says the changing weather conditions could make it challenging for even the strongest of swimmers.
“The water is going to be deeper and we are going to be seeing a lot more currents and moving water as well. Where we used to think it was safe to go swimming, it might be way to deep now. You should definitely check out the water depth before you send your kids in or yourself in.”
Another hazard Rushton says people should be aware of is the floor of the bodies of water like rivers may also change due to rising water levels.
“There may be a shelf or drop-off that you aren’t aware of anymore and we have so many drownings of people walking off a shelf in the beach areas of lakes.”
Rushton advises anyone swimming or boating to wear their life jackets while out on the water. She also says parents should always have someone there to supervise their children if they are near a body of water.
The Lifesaving Society is a national, charitable organization working to prevent drowning and water related injuries through lifeguard training, water safety education, research and advocacy.