The Halton Regional Police Service is responsible for patrolling approximately 325 square kilometres of waters at the western end of Lake Ontario. Our priority is to ensure that all those who spend time on or near the water, do so safely. Please review the following recommendations and do your part in keeping our community safe.

Swimmers

  • Please review all postings in relation to beach swimming. These are posted as precautions.
  • None of the beachfronts in Halton are monitored by lifeguards; swimming is at your own risk.
  • There are no 'swim-only' areas on the Lake Ontario shore. Please do your part to share the water. 
  • Ensure you don't 'out swim or 'out float' your capabilities.
  • Keep an eye on the wind. It does not take much to push you offshore.

Boaters

Before hitting the water, there are important safety items all vessels must have:

  • a Personal Flotation Device (PFD) or Lifejacket for each person onboard,
  • a sound signalling device,
  • a 15 meter buoyant heaving line, and 
  • a watertight flashlight (at night or if reduced visibility).

Before operating a vessel, remember:

  • Do not operate a watercraft if you are impaired by drugs or alcohol.
  • When operating near the shore, you must :
    • yield the right of way to swimmers and sail-powered vessels,
    • use caution when entering any swimming areas, and
    • operate at a speed 10km/h or less within 30 meters of the shore.
  • Do not over-drive your vessel.

Further equipment regulations are provided by Transport Canada's Office of Boating Safety website.

 Possible Offences for Vessels
Criminal Code:
  • Impaired Operation, Dangerous Operation
Small Vessel Regulation:
  • Unsafe Operation, Careless Operation
  • Operating over 10 km/h within 30 m of shore
  • Operating a vessel under age
  • Failing to have proof of competency or pleasure craft license 
  • Operating a vessel with improper safety equipment or not readily accessible 

 Drowning Prevention

Every year, approximately 500 Canadians die in preventable water-related incidents.

  • When it comes to children, supervision is essential to preventing injuries and providing a fun but safe environment for them to enjoy the water. When supervising children in or near the water:
    • Actively supervise, meaning eyes on the child at all times
    • Stay within arms' reach. Every second counts
  • For adults, factors in water-related fatalities often include alcohol consumption and difficulty navigating changes in water current. Don't consume alcohol before or during swimming or boating activities
  • When on a vessel, ensure everyone has a well fitted lifejacket on and fastened
  • Drowning does not look like it does in the movies. Be on the watch for:
    • climbing ladder motion
    • head tilted back
    • body vertical
    • facing shore/lip of pool
    • mouth at water level
    • eyes glassy

Cold Water Survival

When a person falls into very cold water, their body goes through a fairly predictable sequence in reaction to the submersion. Knowing the natural progression can help you react appropriately, giving you the best chance of survival. Watch this video to learn more.

For additional water safety tips, visit the Lifesaving Society Water Safety web page.