People need to remember – Quicksand can form wherever there is water and mud or dirt or sand. IE – just about anywhere..
A Flandreau couple is hoping to warn the public about the danger of getting too close to bodies of water that have deceptively soft ground surrounding them.
Reg Bauske had a near-death experience with his pond earlier this week, and says it could happen to others.
When Bauske spotted a duckling stuck in mud on his 13-acre pond on Sunday, his environmentalist instincts kicked in, and he tried to walk into the water to free it.
“It looked solid, it really looked good. I mean, it looked like it was the bottom of the pond,” Bauske said.
Instead, while trying to save a life, he put his own in jeopardy. Bauske stepped into what he thought was ankle-deep water, but silt and water from farm run-off thinned the ground so much that he sank into it, to his waist.
“Had it been deeper, yes, I probably would’ve died,” Bauske said.
And the more Bauske struggled, the deeper he sank.
“It was like quicksand. And the mud that he had thrown behind him as he sat down and stood up was starting to slide towards him,” wife Gloria Bauske said.
“It was like a vacuum – your legs were stuck in there like a vacuum and you weren’t going to get out,” Bauske said.
But Flandreau Volunteer Firefighter Justin Krull, who helped pull Bauske out of the pond, says there are steps people can take to prevent the trouble.
“Try not to get too excited about it. The more excited you get, and thrashing around, then the worse it’s going to be,”
Krull also says to always bring someone with you and a cell phone, especially for hunters and fishers who hang around lakes and wetlands.
Doing so could keep you on safe and solid ground.
While bauske treats the incident seriously, he did walk away with a laugh and a lesson – the duckling stuck in the pond managed to free itself just as Bauske got stuck.