Accident at Decew Falls prompts reminder on waterfall safety

A young girl remains in hospital after falling 35 feet at Decew Falls in St.Catharines yesterday. She and two other friends were scaling up the falls yesterday afternoon when she fell.

She suffered injuries to her back and was flown to Hamilton General in critical condition.

This is the first rescue at Decew Falls for emergency crews this year, but that’s not the case at Hamilton’s Albion Falls.

This afternoon by-law officers were patrolling the popular spot for trespassers.

“We are still seeing people trying to get past the gated areas and ignoring the signs, so we are certainly going to make them aware of the dangers that exist beyond those gates.” said Ann Lamanes who works for the City of Hamilton.

Over the past two weeks officers have handed out seven tickets but have dished out a lot more warnings.

City crews have also been busy putting up more fencing along the falls.

“If it is not an official trail that leads to the falls I wouldn’t take that risk. It could definitely lead to some possible dangers beyond that trail. So very steep cutoffs and some uncertain footings.” explained Lamanes.

It is legal to get to the base of the falls and go for a swim but it’s illegal to jump a fence to get there.

The city doesn’t plan on adding additional officers for this upcoming long weekend, but patrolling popular areas and making their presence known.