Woman fears tragedy and warns bairns to stay off icy lochs

A horrified woman who saw children walking across a frozen loch on Friday afternoon fears there will be a tragedy if the “crazy” stunt is repeated.

Margaret Goodlad, 68, said she was shocked to see the youngsters in the middle of the Loch of Tresbister near Gulberwick.

She posted a message on Facebook urging parents to tell their children how dangerous icy lochs can be. Others commented that they had seen people walking on the ice at other lochs in Shetland.

Mrs Goodlad, who lives in Lerwick, said it was “just horrendous” to see.

“They are absolutely crazy,” she added.

“Yun bairns we saw were right out in the middle. If they go down, they have had it.

“I just fear that somebody is going to lose their life. It’s crazy.”

Mrs Goodlad warned that the ice was unlikely to be thick enough to support even children’s weight safely.

“It’s not like the old days. There used to be ice skating and curling on Clickimin Loch.

“They would never manage that now because of global warming, the frost doesn’t last long enough and the ice is not thick enough.”

Loch of Trebister with footsteps on the ice. Margaret Goodlad said she saw children near the middle of the loch. Photo: Kevin Jones
Loch of Trebister with footsteps on the ice. Margaret Goodlad said she saw children near the middle of the loch. Photo: Kevin Jones

Mrs Goodlad said people needed to be aware that tragedies can occur and she urged parents to research the story of the Turnbull tragedies and pass on the story to their children.

The Rev John Turnbull was a minister Tingwall in the 1830s and lost his wife, two children – Barbara and John, then aged eight and five – and a servant when they plunged through the ice on Tingwall loch and drowned.

Yesterday Police Scotland issued a warning to people to take care if they were head to enjoy the outdoors in the current wintry conditions.

There has been a surge in Mountain Rescue callouts across the Highlands and Islands due to people getting into difficulty.


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