Residents are asked to steer clear of storm water management ponds, as these man-made bodies of water are unsafe for winter activities like skating. The ponds are designed to collect runoff, improve water quality prior to being released to the natural environment, provide flood protection and reduce erosion.

There are a number of storm water ponds throughout the City, in residential areas the main sites are two in the Heritage Park subdivision, Twin Lakes, Blackwell Glen, and by the Suncor Nature Trail.

Storm water management ponds are especially dangerous, due to how they function, and recreation of any kind is not permitted. Ice conditions can change quickly and without warning creating extreme, hidden hazards.

Factors such as continuously flowing water, fluctuating temperatures, and runoff pollutants like road salt and brine, make these bodies of water (frozen or open water) especially unpredictable and subject to rapid change. Although they may look inviting, they are not safe and should be avoided.

Storm water ponds are not monitored for ice thickness and have year-round water-flow, which weakens and thins the ice. While they may look safe, they are not. These ponds have a specific job, and that’s to continuously collect storm water runoff from neighbourhoods.

Parents and guardians are asked to educate children about the dangers associated with waterways this time of year and about water safety to stay safe this winter. The Canadian Red Cross has useful information available online: https://www.redcross.ca/training-and-certification/swimming-and-water-safety-tips-and-resources/swimming-boating-and-water-safety-tips/ice-safety

Repeating recent notices from Sarnia Police Service and Sarnia Fire, people are asked, for safety, to please stay away from all bodies of water, and to follow posted signage. The City does not monitor or measure ice thickness.

Citizens looking for activities to do during the stay-at-home order, are encouraged to get outside, be active and enjoy nature using City parks and trails safely, following public health guidelines.

For further information, please contact:

David Jackson, General Manager of Engineering & Operations

david.jackson@sarnia.ca or 519-332-0330

Attached: Photos from Storm Management Pond in Heritage Park