FIREFIGHTERS rescued a woman from an Oxford river after she got into trouble in the water. 

Emergency services helped to pull the woman from Castle Mill Stream this afternoon, a backwater of the River Thames, during the balmy bank holiday sunshine.

Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue Service has now shared a stern warning, urging people to be aware of the dangers that lurk below the surface.

Police and ambulance crews were seen parked on Hythe Bridge Street at about 12.30pm today, and it is believed this was linked to the rescue.

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Oxford Mail:

Pics: Andy Ffrench

Two fire engines from Rewley Road and a specialist rescue crew from Kidlington were sent to the river rescue, and firefighters worked alongside colleagues from Thames Valley Police to rescue the woman from the water.

She was given a precautionary check by South Central Ambulance Service at the scene, the fire service said. 

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Crew manager Rob Croll, who attended the incident, shared a stern warning about the dangers of entering rivers, canals and lakes. 

He said: "From out of the water, or above the water, you may not be able to see what’s under the water.

"That could be anything from large rocks to machinery, from shopping trolleys to dead branches, and even fish hooks or broken fishing line - all of which could injure you.

"If you dive or jump into open water you don’t know what is underneath, and a broken neck from a diving accident could paralyse you for life."

Oxford Mail:

An ambulance on Hythe Bridge Street this afternoon

Castle Mill Stream runs between Jericho and Oxpens, but the fire service did not specify exactly where the woman was rescued. 

In May 2016, 16-year-old Ellis Downes from Harwell tragically drowned while swimming in the River Thames at Culham. 

Last summer his father Darren Downes shared a video plea urging people to be aware of the dangers of wild swimming.

He said: "I'd hate for anyone else to go through what me and my family have gone through. Educate [your children], tell them to keep out of the water and stay safe."

Last week the Environment Agency warned people of the 'hidden dangers' in River Thames, as it predicted people using it to cool down during the warm weather.

Cold-water shock as well as dumped items, currents and reeds in the water were cited by the EA as key safety risks.