BEECH GROVE — Looks can be deceiving in the case of retention ponds in the winter.
Despite the frigid temperatures over the last two weeks in central Indiana, retention ponds and other bodies of water may not actually be frozen like they appear to be, making it dangerous to step foot on.
Bargersville Deputy Fire Chief Michael Pruitt said snow can act as an insulator on these ponds, which means underneath, the ice may be thawing.
“It may look inviting to walk across the pond or lay on the snow on the pond, but actually that ice underneath could be thawing because the water temperatures. It could be an underground spring of some type that’s causing that to thaw. But it really starts thawing at that point and you wouldn’t even know it walking out there until you already fallen through,” Pruitt said.
Pruitt encourages Hoosiers to ask anyone they see to get off of the retention pond. Pruitt added if a person on a retention pond does not get off when asked, he urges people to call authorities before a tragedy happens.
"I would hate somebody to have to look back and go, 'Gosh I wish I would've reported that before the accident happened,'” Pruitt said.