CHEDDAR Reservoir could be closed to the public if people continue to ignore warning signs not to swim there. The news comes after youths were caught swimming in the water at the weekend and refused to leave, shouting abuse at the rangers who caught them
CHEDDAR Reservoir could be closed to the public if people continue to ignore warning signs not to swim there. The news comes after youths were caught swimming in the water last weekend and refused to leave, shouting abuse at the rangers who caught them. A spokesman for Bristol Water, which owns the reservoir, said: "People who abuse the facilities are ruining it for everyone else. If this sort of behaviour continues we may consider closing the reservoir to the public. "We allow people to walk around the reservoir and it is very popular with joggers, which is no surprise as it is situated in a very picturesque part of Somerset. If we do close the reservoir off it will be because of this small group of people."In the latest incident, police were called to the reservoir when a number of youths refused to leave the water after being confronted by a fisheries ranger. Sergeant Peter Yensen, of Cheddar police, said: "The youths were abusive and threatened to rip the ranger's head off if he tried to stop them swimming. Police had to be called and the youths got out but nobody was charged."In the summer of 2005 a lady died after swimming in the reservoir. It is dangerous to swim in unchartered water and the warning signs are clear for everyone to see."Fisheries and recreation manager Bob Handford said: "People don't realise there are a lot of pipes and pumps under the water which are extremely dangerous."Unfortunately swimming does become popular in summer. These people think it is fun to have a few drinks and then cool off in the water. Not only are they swimming illegally, they are doing it under the influence. If it continues, it is only a matter of time before someone else dies.