People wade into the Clinton Square fountain to beat the heat

With temperatures in the 90's, the Clinton Square fountain looks refreshing for many, but police are warning that being in that water is against the law.

It wasn't long before Josephine Barnett and her two grand daughters, got caught in hot water by the police.

"I do it every year, I sneak the kids in for a few minutes and then we leave," said Barnett. "I don't let them go out too far, they just put their feet in."

As the sun beats down on this steamy May afternoon, many kids see the Clinton Street fountain as a perfect place to splash around.

But this water is off limits.

City officials warn it's not safe or sanitary. There isn't even chlorine in it to ward off bacteria.

"I think the kids should be able to get wet if they want to, it's open to the public," said Thelma Christian.

"It wasn't built or designed with that in mind," said Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner.

This afternoon, police were on patrol to enforce the law, but when it's this hot out, it's a sticky situation trying to keep people out of the fountain.

"This time of year, we see people wading or bathing in there," said Syracuse Police Sergeant Gary Bulinski. "It's a safety issue, we don't have a lifeguard."

The Syracuse Police Department also issued a statement Tuesday evening, further clarifying its position on wading in the fountain:

In the interest of public safety, the Syracuse Police Department is advising the public to refrain from wading in the Clinton Square Fountain. The Syracuse Police Department will be increasing patrols around the fountain to help enforce the City of Syracuse Local Law that prohibits wading and bathing in the fountain. The increased enforcement is an effort to gain voluntary compliance by the public, and to help reduce the risk of injury to someone illegally wading in a fountain that is not monitored by lifeguards. People who violate the city ordinance are subject to arrest, and may be fined a maximum of $500 for said violation.

Original story from Tuesday morning:

High temperatures may have you looking for a way to cool down, but if you're thinking of taking a dip in the Clinton Square fountain, police say you need to steer clear.

Swimming in the fountain is not allowed, and you could be ticketed. In the past, city officials have discouraged going into the fountain because it is not chlorinated and there are no lifeguards on duty. Last May, the city erected a barrier around the fountain to keep people from wading in. The city has, in the past, gone as far as to turn off the fountain to keep people away.

Already, recent hot weather has brought people out to the fountain looking for relief. Just last week, we spotted some Syracuse Police officers shooing people out of the water.

We want to know what you think. Should people be allowed to go into the fountain? If not, what should the city do to keep people out? Leave us a comment and let us know your opinion.