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Muskegon Police Department
Monday January 25th, 2016 :: 09:44 a.m. EST


The Muskegon Public Safety Office asks everyone to be aware of safety on ice

The Muskegon Public Safety Office is asking that everyone please use extreme caution on iced over waterways, whether it be for ice fishing, skating or just walking on.

We wish for everyone to enjoy their winter but please use caution. No ice should ever be considered 100% safe ice. All ice has the propensity to be dangerous not only from drowning but also hypothermia which can set in within minutes of falling through the ice.

Below are just a few safety tips from various DNR agencies to keep in mind.

1. Ice seldom freezes uniformly. It may be a foot thick in one location and only an inch or two just a few feet away. Always check the ice with each step.

2. New ice is usually stronger than old ice. Four inches of clear, newly formed ice may support one person on foot, while a foot or more of old, partially thawed ice may not.

3. Ice formed over flowing water and currents is often dangerous. This is especially true near streams, bridges and culverts.

4. The insulating effect of snow slows down the freezing process. The extra weight also reduces how much weight the ice sheet can support. Also, ice near shore can be weaker than ice that is farther out.

5. Schools of fish or flocks of waterfowl can also adversely affect the relative safety of ice. The movement of fish can bring warm water up from the bottom of the lake. This can open holes in the ice causing snowmobiles and cars to break through.

6. Areas to avoid: where the ice is discolored, where vegetation or timber protrudes through the ice, or where there is an inlet or outlet (moving water).

7. Safety Devices: It is a good idea to wear a floatation device and also carry a spud to test the ice every step. Carrying a rope is also a good idea to assist anyone who may have fallen through without getting into a position where you place yourself in danger.

We wish everyone a safe enjoyable winter season!

Muskegon Police Department
980 Jefferson Street
Muskegon, MI 49440

Emergency: 9-1-1
Non-emergencies: 231-724-6750

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