BOSSES at Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service have put out a warning about the dangers of frozen lakes, reservoirs, ponds and waterways during the winter months.
They have said that, while a frozen lake, pond or reservoir may look enticing, the ice is a very dangerous place to be.
It has also been pointed out that temperatures in the UK do not drop anywhere near to the levels of sustained freezing needed to support ice sports enjoyed by people in Canada, Norway or Russia.
Safety guidelines have been issued by the service as the country moves deeper into what is predicted to be a particularly harsh winter which experts say could help families stay safe around frozen stretches of water.
Officers are reminding News Telegraph readers never to venture on to frozen ponds and lakes, no matter how safe it looks and to always ensure children are supervised near frozen water.
Dog owners, they also advise, should be careful around frozens water and avoid throwing sticks or balls onto ice.
Should a dog go onto the ice and get into difficulty, their message is not to attempt to carry out a rescue but instead raise the alarm by calling.
Should someone fall through ice, fire and rescue officers advise the first course of action is to shout for assistance and then call for emergency services on 999.
Onlookers should also stay off the ice and not be tempted to go on to it, but advise the casualty from the shore or bank to keep still.
Rescuers could try to reach a casualty from the bank using a rope, pole, tree branch, clothing tied together or anything else that extends reach.
To see more advice, including how to prepare and deal with cold weather at home, visit www.derbys-fire.gov.uk