- Associated Press - Saturday, May 2, 2015

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Watercraft officials are warning Ohioans that water temperatures remain cold despite warming air temperatures across the state.

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources Division of Watercraft says that despite warm days, Lake Erie’s water temperature continues to hover around 40 degrees, and Ohio’s inland lakes and rivers also remain cold.

ODNR Division of Watercraft Chief Mike Miller says people falling into cold water may only have about 15 minutes before losing control of their muscles and succumbing to hypothermia.

Officials say when water temperatures are less than 50 degrees, the window of opportunity for rescue is only a few minutes for those not dressed properly for the conditions. ODNR urges boaters to dress in insulating fabrics and protective layers, as well as to always wear a life jacket.

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