Rapidly Deteriorating Ice Puts the Coast Guard in Motion

DETROIT — Coast Guard Sector Detroit had a large increase in the workload as the recent warm weather began melting ice all over the Great Lakes.

Coast Guard Air Station Detroit dispatched multiple HH-65C helicopter missions and Coast Guard Small Boat Stations responded to numerous reports of fisherman on ice floes and people having fallen through the ice.

Near Saginaw Bay, Lake St. Clair and the western basin of Lake Erie (Monroe, Mich.) it took many helicopter missions over the last few days to search for people in distress on the ice and in the water.

Temperatures are forecast to remain well above freezing for the next few days, making the ice extremely dangerous and unpredictable. With lake temperatures still extremely cold, immersion into the icy water can lead to hypothermia and eventually to death within minutes.

The Great Lakes have already claimed multiple lives this winter and it is strongly urged that the public use extreme caution on or near the ice.

All ice is a clear, solid risk.

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