Safety Advisory

Published on January 2, 2021

The public is asked to remain off the Rideau Canal, as the ice that has formed on the surface is still dangerously thin. Signs have been posted at access points to advise the public of this danger.

The water level beneath the ice surface varies from approximately one metre (three feet) to 4.3 metres (14 feet) deep along the length of the Rideau Canal, between downtown Ottawa and Dows Lake.

The presence of work crews on the canal in the coming days must not be construed as a sign that the ice surface is stable. They prepare for the opening of the skating season by flooding the ice to thicken its surface. The Rideau Canal Skateway team are professionals who know how to manage the risks associated with their work.

The Rideau Canal Skateway typically opens in early January, when the ice thickness measures at least 30 centimetres (12 inches) to accommodate the weight of the public.

Once the ice thickens and conditions are safe, the NCC will work hard to open the 51st season on the world’s largest skating rink as quickly as possible. 

Media information

Valérie Dufour
Media relations – CCN
613-797-0279 (cellular)