Rescue crews stress water safety as temperatures heat up around western Washington

VIDEO: Fire crews warn about water safety as temperatures heat up

SEATTLE — As Sunday marked the return of the heat, Monday is expected to get even hotter. And with the hot temperatures, many will look to head out on the water.

Firefighters, however, are advising people to take extreme caution as the water is still cold.

“Lake Washington, Lake Union and also Elliott Bay — still cold enough to cause hypothermia, especially if you have a lot of clothing on as well,” said David Cuerpo of the Seattle Fire Department.

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That is why fire crews are asking boaters to wear life jackets.

Officials said if you take your children with you to the water, keep an eye on them. They warn that you should not go alone. In fact, they think it is best to let a relative or friend know where you are.

“Even a short time in the water can cause you to get freezing cold,” Cuerpo said.

It was only days ago that a woman fell into the water near Magnuson Park, resulting in one of nine recent water rescues.

In that case, it took an hour to find the woman.

A family KIRO 7 saw out on the water and spoke with said they had been going out for about 30 years, so the warnings about water safety were no surprise to them.

“I think we’re just super cautious of it, aware of it,” said Sari Keim.

And even when the sun is out and it looks great outside, Jud Keim said it’s been feeling downright cold in the water.

“I dove off, but I was like, ‘Holy smoke.’ And she’s just kind of laughing, but I’m like, ‘Can you come back and get me please, it’s freezing in here.’ Put the pep in the step that’s for sure,” said Jud Keim.

Firefighters are asking that people who use paddleboards and kayaks heed the warning as well.

For those who do jump in the water, they are being reminded that cold water can sneak up on you quickly, making it difficult to stay above the water.