The northern Medical Health Officers for the Saskatchewan Health Authority (SHA) and the Northern Inter-Tribal Health Authority (NITHA) are advising the public to use extreme caution around lakes and rivers in the province. An abundance of rain this spring has led to high water levels and substantially higher water flows. In addition to the usual precautions for swimmers and boaters such as always wearing a life jacket properly; watching speed on the water; not drinking and boating; not drinking and swimming; not traveling at night; and other safety measures, extra caution is urged in and near water this year. Children and non-swimmers should always be closely supervised when around or in water.
The majority of drownings in Saskatchewan occur between May and September. Although experienced swimmers, boaters and other users of our waterways in the north may understand the need to consistently practice extreme caution, with the flows being higher this year, things can change from calm to dangerous very quickly. As the swift currents can cause more erosion of land near the waterways it is prudent to avoid unstable banks. While in the water, we also caution about floating debris that will be moving at fast pace with the potential to cause damage to individuals and vessels.
Water related injuries and drowning deaths are preventable. We encourage everyone to be alert to keep all northern residents safe this summer.
For more information on stream flows and lake levels in Saskatchewan, visit: