Although the annual Mirror Lake Jump is an Ohio State tradition, students should be aware that it is not a university sanctioned event and can be quite dangerous. Every year large numbers of students gather at Mirror Lake during Beat Michigan Week and jump into the freezing water. Many students suffer injuries and illnesses after this tradition. Please educate your student about the dangers of jumping into Mirror Lake.
Mirror Lake is not intended for swimming, especially during winter. Mirror Lake’s depth varies greatly from one end to the other. Due to the changes in depth, students should never enter Mirror Lake head-first, or push others into the lake. The bottom of Mirror Lake is rocky, and garbage tends to collect throughout the night. Students should wear shoes to protect their feet and exit the lake as soon as possible. Each year many students are treated for cuts, sprains and other injuries. These injuries can easily be avoided with a little caution.
OSU’s Student Health Center recommends that students be aware of the temperature during the Mirror Lake Jump. Although not all students choose to drink before the event, the more alcohol a student consumes increases the chances that they will get hypothermia. Many students believe that alcohol is a type of antifreeze; however it actually magnifies the shock effect of cold water. Students who have been drinking can contract hypothermia without being aware of the symptoms. Encourage your student to learn the symptoms of hypothermia. Some symptoms are shivering, slurred speech, fatigue, cold and pale skin, and abnormally slow breathing. Medical personnel will be stationed at Mirror Lake throughout the jump and students should be constantly aware of their health.
Every year after the Mirror Lake Jump, many students report lost items. We recommend that all valuables be left at home. Students may want to have a “designated dry person” to hold room keys and any other necessary items while they are in the water. The cost to replace a lost residence hall key is $125, so a little planning can save a lot of money. Students may also want to use the buddy system to make sure everyone gets home safely. Students should not hesitate to report a problem to the on-site police or medical units.
For more information about Mirror Lake Health concerns visit here: