YOUTHS have been warned of the dangers of playing in disused mines and quarries.

One mum said her son had been among 'crowds' of young people who were jumping around in the old mining area by Roanhead beach and wanted to send a warning to parents.

Other community figures have echoed her concerns, highlighting the dangers of using such areas as 'playgrounds'.

Parents and young people are being warned that playing in mines and quarries could lead serious injury or death.

Barrow fire boss Roger Exley said: "Firefighters from Barrow are urging young people to stay away from disused quarries and old mine workings.

"They pose a great risk to life from sudden and unexpected collapse or falls from height along with the risk of flooding.

"We are working alongside out colleagues in Mountain and Mines Rescue to ensure we warn of the risk and ensure parents and those that care for young people know where there children are and ensure they are safe."

Ben Shirley, who represents Dalton North on Barrow Council, said: "Clearly, quarries aren't playgrounds.

"It's unsafe for people to hang around in places like this.

"If something goes wrong, it could lead to somebody being seriously injured or worse.

"I would absolutely caution against going into the quarry for anything other than working there.

"People can socialise, in line with the latest Government guidance, at Roanhead beach or at one of our other open, public spaces we're fortunate to have on our doorstep."

Dave Taylor, the chairman of Dalton Community Action Group, said he used to go swimming in the pits as a youngster and was well aware of the dangers.

He said: "There are many hidden dangers in these pits, from old cars to scaffolding tubes. The weather has changed so we get some respite for a few days but the problem will get bigger if its not nipped in the bud now.

"A pointless tragedy can be avoided if we act on this quick enough." He also called for signs to be fitted.