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Port Stanley News RSS Feed  Regional Enjoy Your Pursuits But Please Do Them Responsibly


PC Jamie Stanley, OPP
Enjoy Your Pursuits But Please Do Them Responsibly

Huron County, ON - With the arrival of above average temperatures and sunny skies this past weekend many Huron County residents and visitors found their way outdoors and engaged in some of their favourite outdoor pursuits. Enjoying your favourite outdoor activity is certainly encouraged but doing it in a safe and responsible manner can mean the difference between a great day spent outdoors or a day marred by injury or death. Huron County Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) would like to remind the public to ALWAYS THINK SAFETY FIRST following a weekend that turned deadly on Huron's waterways and roadways.

Two canoeing incidents occurred over the weekend.

The first incident occurred on Friday evening when a 23-year-old male lost his life while canoeing down the Nine Mile River. His canoe overturned when it struck a deadfall and he ultimately drowned to death. The male was not wearing a life jacket or a personal floatation device.

The second canoeing incident occurred Saturday evening on the Maitland River. Two intoxicated males in their early 20's were paddling down the fast flowing river when they also hit a deadfall in the water and overturned their canoe. Fortunately, the males were wearing personal floatation devices (PFD) and they stayed afloat in the water. The males spent about approximately an hour in the cold water before they made it to shore. Their screams for help were heard by a resident that lives on Maitland Block Road and a 9-1-1 call was made. The canoers were eventually located and successfully rescued around 7:30 p.m. Both males were completely underdressed and unprepared for the water conditions. They were transported to hospital and were treated for hypothermia.

Cold waters are dangerous and it is especially important to wear a PFD during cold water seasons - it can make an unexpected mishap survivable. Make sure you are well-dressed and consider taking a few extra warming items on board. Hypothermia is a particularly significant risk right now. Boaters and those working and playing near the water need to remember - the colder the water, the less rescue time there is! Before heading out, it is essential to do a thorough check of your vessel to ensure you have all your required and recommended safety eq uipment.

A pair of incidents involving all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) also occurred in Huron County over the weekend, both incidents involved operators that failed to think safety first. On Sunday, April 9th, shortly before 5:00 p.m. police learned of a collision involving a side-by-side utility vehicle (UTV). Officers learned the driver was travelling along the shoulder of Maitland Block Road when the rear cargo bucket released and three young passengers fell out onto the ground. The three young ladies, all in their early 20's, sustained non-life threatening injuries. Neither the driver, nor his four passengers were wearing helmets.

Just over an hour later on Hern Line in South Huron officers responded to a call of an overturned ATV down in the deep ditch. Upon arrival police located a 42-year-old male that had sustained minor injuries. The male was we aring a helmet at the time of the crash however he had been drinking alcohol.

"Unfortunately we still see too many young people engaging in risky and dangerous behaviour. Whether it is failing to wear the required safety equipment or making the decision to operate a vehicle or vessel after consuming alcohol, these are risks that are unnecessary. The events of this past weekend should be a reminder to everyone that sometimes unnecessary risks can lead to life-changing or fatal events. Please adopt a safety conscious mindset and always think about your safety first." - Huron OPP Detachment Commander Inspector Jason YOUNAN

Learn More on Marine Safety

PFD or Lifejacket?
What is Cold Water Immersion?

Learn More on Off-Road Vehicle Safety

ATVs and Alcohol - Is It Really Worth It?
Getting Started - Tips for Young ATV Riders
Keep it Legal - Keep it Safe!
Handling Your ATV Safely
Last Updated: Wednesday, 12 April 2017 16:34:36 PM EST

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