Ardsley Reservoir search operation continues for missing man

Ardsley reservoir
Emergency services at Ardsley Reservoir Credit: Mark Pritchard

A major search operation launched after reports of a man in trouble at a Yorkshire reservoir has entered a second day.Emergency services were called to Ardsley Reservoir, also known as Tingley reservoir, at around 5.30pm on Saturday, 16 July, after a man was seen in difficulty.West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service, paramedics and West Yorkshire Police, including a helicopter, spent several hours at the scene but have yet to find him.Detective Inspector Dan Bates of Leeds CID said: “We are continuing the search this morning in relation to a man that was seen to enter the water yesterday.“His family is being supported by specially trained officers.“A number of emergency services are at the scene today carrying out enquiries. we would urge people to stay away from the area whilst this is carried out.”He appealed for information from anyone who was at the reservoir at the time.It came as the Met Office issued an unprecedented red warning for heat for the coming week – meaning there is a "very likely" risk to life – with temperatures expected to reach a record 40C in some areas, although Saturday's highs did not exceed 30C.

The incident comes just days after the emergency services reiterated warnings about the dangers of open water swimming in hot weather after the death of a 16-year-old boy in a canal near Wakefield.

Alfie McCraw, from Wakefield, died after getting into difficulty in a canal. Credit: Family handout

Alfie McCraw died after getting into difficulty in the Aire and Calder Navigation, near the Southern Washlands, Wakefield, on Monday, 11 July. He had just finished his GCSEs.

Following that incident, Supt Nick Smart, of West Yorkshire Police, said: "The weather is forecast to get even hotter over the weekend and into next week, but we would urge people to not be tempted to cool off in open water, unless it is a supervised area intended for swimming."

The search went on for several hours Credit: Mark Pritchard

Ardsley Reservoir, also known locally as Tingley reservoir, is owned by Yorkshire Water, which says on its website that swimming in the water is prohibited.

The website says: "You can't swim in Ardsley Reservoir. Reservoirs are really dangerous places and have lots of dangers hidden under the surface. We don't allow anyone to swim in our reservoirs, even if you’re a great swimmer."

The company has previously warned about the dangers of the reservoir after reports of youngsters ignoring the rules.

In 2016, the then manager Darren Lynch said: "Some residents think Ardsley Reservoir is a placid and safe places to take a swim, but reservoirs can be extremely dangerous.

"They are often colder than rivers and this can result in cold water shock that can lead to hyperventilation, increased blood pressure, breathing difficulties and heart attacks. Water temperatures remain just as cold in summer as in winter."