NI Water are used to working around reservoirs and reminding walkers and joggers of their dangers.
However, last week staff were alerted to an unusual rescue at Leathemstown Reservoir, Lisburn after a cow ‘mooved’ into the disused reservoir that had been drained.
Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service (NIFRS) rescued the animal and she was reunited with her owner, a local farmer.
Maynard Cousley, Water Supply Senior Manager said this was a timely reminder to everyone that reservoirs can be dangerous places, and especially when there is little or no water in them; even local livestock can be caught out!
A NIFRS spokesperson added: “Following a spell of hot weather and no rain for a number of weeks, the reservoir had become sticky.
“The animal was probably thirsty and hoping to get a drink but became trapped in the mud very quickly as the temperatures increased.”
The Leathemstown Reservoir, Lisburn is a disused reservoir that has been drained. However, reservoirs that are full of water are dangerous places.
The dangers around swimming in a reservoir include:
Very cold temperatures; the water can be bitterly cold even in summer months.
There can be strong underwater currents, which can trouble even the most confident of swimmers.
Reservoirs are often very deep, much deeper than you expect.
There may be hidden debris, underwater hazards and draw-off pipe work which can cause injury, including weeds and plants, which can entangle you under the water.
It can be very difficult to get out of the water (steep slimy banks).
There are no lifeguards on duty.
In the past, NI Water staff at other sites have helped an injured buzzard, a seal, a small dolphin, a family of ducks, swans and abandoned kittens!
Please see the website, niwater.com for further information on water safety.