Coast Guard unit warns of unsafe ice conditions due to increasingly warm temperatures

9th Coast Guard District NewsMARQUETTE, Mich. — The crew of Coast Guard Station Marquette is issuing a warning Thursday that the unusually warm temperatures observed this year have greatly increased the possibility of weakened ice.

“Ice conditions are deteriorating rapidly, and major wet cracks and ice floes have been recognized the last few days,” said Petty Officer 2nd Class Joshua Kuhn, operations petty officer at Coast Guard Station Marquette.  “With forecasted temperatures climbing to the high 30s, this will only accelerate weakening ice.”

The combination of warmer temperatures and shifting winds has caused extremely hazardous ice conditions in Munising Bay. The Coast Guard cautions those ice fishing and transiting on the ice due to the unpredictability of ice breaking apart into ice floes.

Never venture out on the ice alone.  Proper precautions should always be taken before heading out on the water or the ice. When venturing out, a person should think I.C.E.:

Intelligence – know the weather and ice conditions, know where you are going, and know how to call for help. Never go out alone.

Clothing – have the proper clothing to prevent hypothermia. Wear a waterproof exposure suit and a life preserver.

Equipment – have the proper equipment. Carry two ice picks or screwdrivers, in case you fall in. Use these items to dig into the ice and pull yourself out. They are more effective than bare hands! Carry a whistle or noise maker to alert people that you are in distress. Carry a cellular phone or marine band radio in a waterproof container so that you can call for help if you come across trouble.

If you have any problems viewing this article, please report it here.