HANOVER (CBS) – Dennis Whit Jr. remained in the hospital Wednesday night after falling through the ice at Forge Pond in Hanover. His father said his 19-year old son is expected to be OK though he has a lot of bruises.
Firefighters pulled him from the water just hours after using social media to warn residents that the ice is not safe in town.
When he fell into the water, he used his hockey stick to brace himself on the ice. A second man called 911 and Hanover’s fire chief who was nearby was the first to the scene.
Rescue workers in cold water suits launched a boat and pulled the man from the water about 150 feet off of shore.
Dennis Whit Sr. said his son only skated on Forge Pond a few times prior to the accident. He recounted receiving the call that his son was in the hospital. “He’s my baby of 19 years and I was pretty hysterical,” he said.
Fire Capt. Justin Reed said Whit was conscious and alert when firefighters reached him, though the frigid water was beginning to have an impact on him.
“He was getting very weak. He had been in the water for just a little while, but the cold water will drain you pretty quick,” said Reed.
WBZ-TV’s Katie Brace reports
Whit Sr. said his son went to get a puck that went into the center of the pond and he fell through the ice. He said his son’s body temperature dropped to 82 degrees. By late Wednesday it was back to normal.
Just hours before Wednesday’s rescue, they sent out several tweets about ice safety.
Among their advice to residents was that “Only Safe Ice is at your local skating rink!”
The Hanover Fire Department also tweeted a photograph of firefighters in cold water suits working on their ice training techniques during a Tuesday exercise.
Tom Zukauskas said that while he created an area on the frozen pond for hockey, the portion of the pond closer to the middle is not safe for skating.
“The middle is always unsafe, and we know that all the time,” said Zukauskas.
WBZ-TV’s Katie Brace contributed to this report.
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