Strathcona County is encouraging residents to keep off stormwater ponds this winter.

While the ponds are part of the county's stormwater management system, the thickness of the ice is not monitored, so the conditions are unknown and unpredictable.

As such, there are large red signs posted around all of the ponds that talk about year-round safety with regards to stormwater.

"The unfortunate thing is that in Canada, pond hockey is one thing that we're known for, but with these man-made bodies of water, because they're not getting checked, there is a risk of the ice breaking," said Suzanne Lobb, manager of outdoor services, programs and planning with Strathcona County.

Instead, residents are asked to use one of the county's outdoor rinks, snow-banked rinks or skating pathways for their outdoor activities.

There are currently three such pathways in the area, which are located in Emerald Hills, Broadmoor Lake Park and South Cooking Lake.

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