ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) – Now that we’ve had several days with temperatures above freezing, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is warning people to be safe on the state’s lakes, rivers and ponds.
Anglers and snowmobilers particularly are encouraged to be extra cautious of ice on Minnesota lakes becoming too thin and brittle. Officials said it doesn’t take long for the ice to melt and become more brittle after several days of warmer temperatures.
So far this winter, there haven’t been any ice-related deaths in Minnesota. Last year, four people died after falling through thin ice.
Ice fishing and snowmobiling are two of the most popular winter activities in Minnesota. Anglers and snowmobilers are encouraged to use caution when heading out onto the ice. Officials said the minimum thickness for walking on ice is four inches, for a snowmobile or ATV it’s at least five inches, it’s 8-12 inches for a car and more than 12 inches for a medium-sized truck.
Officials said if it temperatures are above freezing for a full 24 hours, you should stay off the ice.