In the interest of safety, and to avoid unnecessary fines, the Forest Preserve District of Kane County reminds the public that swimming is not permitted in any Kane County forest preserve.
While tickets have always been a risk for those swimming in the preserves, Forest Preserve District police felt the previous $75 fine wasn’t enough of a deterrent. On Aug. 14, after a request from staff, the Forest Preserve Commission voted to raise fines to $150 (if paid within 10 days), and $200 if paid after 10 days.
Officials hope the higher amount will give people pause before entering the water. Fines are posted next to all district no-swimming signs. The Use Ordinance is also posted on the website, and an abbreviated version is posted in all district kiosks.
“We want patrons to enjoy the forest preserves but to do so safely,” said Director of Public Safety Mike Gilloffo. “Swimming, especially at Siegler Lake within Big Rock Forest Preserve, is hazardous. The lake is a reclaimed quarry. It’s very deep, places to safely exit are limited, and there are no lifeguards,” he said.
To further enhance safety, the Forest Preserve District Police Department personnel now carry rescue sticks, to be used in cases of emergency. The device can be thrown into the water and will automatically inflate upon contact with water.
Preserves are open daily, sunrise to sunset.
If you have any questions, please call the Forest Preserve District at 630-232-5980 or visit www.kaneforest.com. On social media, search @forestpreserve.
SOURCE: Forest Preserve District of Kane County news release