Bench placed on iced over Broad

A PARK bench has been placed on the ice in the middle of a broad, the alarmed Broads Authority has revealed.And the authority is urging people not to go boating or set foot on frozen rivers and broads during the current cold snap.

A PARK bench has been placed on the ice in the middle of a broad, the alarmed Broads Authority has revealed.

And the authority is urging people not to go boating or set foot on frozen rivers and broads during the current cold snap.

Many of the broads, parish staithes, marinas and dykes are frozen over, with ice flows on rivers, which have left some boat owners stranded and unable to return to their moorings.

At Whitlingham Country Park people have been putting their lives at risk by walking across the Great and Little Broads, despite signs warning them not to do so. A park bench has been dug out and placed on the ice in the middle of the Little Broad, which has now been cordoned off.


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Russell Wilson, Park Manager said: “This is dangerous and irresponsible behaviour and people are putting their lives, and those of others, at risk. While we invite everyone to enjoy Whitlingham, which is like a winter wonderland in the snow, we advise them not to venture on the ice as we don't know how safe it is.

“The water is obviously icy cold and people can die of hypothermia very quickly or drown if they are caught under the ice. Please keep your dogs under control too and don't go after them if they stray on to the ice.”

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Adrian Vernon, Head Navigation Ranger, said: “The broads may look inviting when they are frozen and other people may already be on the ice but it is not possible to tell how thick it is. It can vary in different parts of the same area of water. Please don't become a victim and don't endanger the people that may have to rescue you.”

Mr Vernon also warned boat owners not to go out on their boats. “Slippery decks make navigating hazardous and boats could get damaged or holed if they hit ice,” he said. “Even if they get out of their mooring the cold weather may mean that they may not get back because of the ice. There are already several boat owners unable to return to moorings at Ranworth and Horning,” he said.

Oulton Broad, Barton Broad, Ranworth Broad and Womack Water, as well as other broads, marinas and many side dykes are currently iced up.

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