'Don't skate on the lake'
As cold as it has been, and as much fun as it to skate on local lakes, ponds and rivers, doing so is not safe, advises Ridge Meadows RCMP.
Police, along with the cities of Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows, and fire departments from both, are urging citizens to avoid skating or any activity on ice-covered waterways.
Although local temperatures have gone below zero, and ponds may have frozen, none have been deemed safe.
"While we appreciate that a pickup game of hockey on a frozen pond is part of our Canadian DNA, the reality is that the ice conditions are not reliable for this type of activity," said David Boag, director of parks and facilities for Maple Ridge.
"The same goes for streams and waters adjacent to our trail network. As the temperatures fluctuate, we are concerned that citizens and their pets are at risk venturing onto ice."
Kate Zanon, director of community services in Pitt Meadows, said the warning is a public safety issue, preventing a potential tragedy.
“It’s rare that we get this type of weather in the winter, so it is a novelty, but not at the risk of people’s lives and safety.”
RCMP Sgt. Brenda Gresiuk said ice on lakes, ponds and rivers may be inviting, but poses a significant safety risk.
"Be safe and stay on the shores and enjoy the great outdoors.”