DNR: Thin ice dangers
Indiana Conservation Officers are asking people to be aware of the dangers of ponds, rivers, streams and frozen lakes this winter.
Temperature fluxuations have resulted in thin areas of ice across the state.
Residents are advised to be vigilant and keep an eye on neighborhood waterways for those that venture out on the ice.
Each winter, Hoosiers enjoy a variety of activities like hiking, skating and ice fishing.
DNR officers warn that many drown by falling through ice.
Here are some tips to consider when encountering frozen waterways.
- If you don’t know don’t go
- No ice is safe
- Don’t test ice thickness while alone
- When testing ice thickness use an ice auger at least four inches is recommended for ice fishing with five inches for snowmobling
- Carry gear such as ropes and ice hooks
- Wear floatation coats or life jackets
Officers say wearing a life jacket is one of the best things you can do for your own personal safety. Life jackets and floatation devices will keep your head above water until rescue crews arrive.
“Ice is beginning to form on smaller bodies of water. We would like to ask that the community keep a close eye out for children in your area who may play on the ice," said Indiana Conservation Officer Max Winchell. He adds, “It takes extremely low temperatures and quite some time to form several inches of ice.”
If a pet or animal is found in distress on the ice, never venture on the ice to save the animal which can lead to tragedy. Instead, contact your local emergency response personnel who have the equipment and means to perform a rescue operation.
Frozen bodies of water can appear frozen but can have thin ice in unsuspecting locations.
Water surrounded by sand can freeze with inconsistencies in ice thickness.
Thin ice can also be created by underground springs, wind, and animals.
Remember if you don't know, don't go.