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St. Louis firefighters train for ice rescues in Benton Park

By Julia Avery

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    ST. LOUIS (KMOV) — The cold days followed by a moderately warm day made perfect conditions for the St. Louis Fire Department’s ice rescue training.

“We try to do it every year. This is the first time we have done it in a couple years because last year we didn’t have ice long enough to get around to it,” Captain Tony Lammert said.

The pond in Benton Park is shallow and had two inches of ice on top of it when the training began Sunday morning.

“Right now we are just barely above two inches which is what we require to get guys out here to do a little training,” Lammert said.

The Marine Rescue Task Force trains to pull people from the water, pulling them across the ice to land. Captain Lammert said if you fall through the ice and can’t get out you should stay still, conserve your energy to keep you warm, and wait for them to come pull you out.

“The best thing to do is keep your head above the surface of the ice, get to the edge of the ice and get your arms up on the ice and support yourself,” Lammert said. “Try to get yourself out but if you can’t do that in the first couple of minutes stop wasting energy. We will come and get you as quickly as we can.”

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