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Indiana Conservation Officers Say You're Always On Thin Ice

Last updated on Monday, January 16, 2012

(UNDATED) - Indiana Conservation Officers are advising citizens of the potential hazards of being on frozen lakes, ponds, rivers, and streams this winter.

Every winter, thousands of Hoosiers enjoy fishing, skating, or just walking around on frozen ponds and lakes. Too often, people drown after falling through the ice. Like any outdoor recreational pursuit, Hoosiers need to take appropriate precautions to stay safe on the ice.

Conservation Officers want citizens to put safety first. Here are a few tips to remember before going onto a frozen lake or pond:

* No ice is safe ice.

* At least 4 inches of ice is recommended for ice fishing

* If you don't know....don't go.

* Wear lifejackets or flotation coats.

* Carry ice picks and rope gear.

Some bodies of water will appear to be frozen solid but actually have thin ice in several unsuspecting areas. Flowing water, such as rivers and streams, wind conditions, and waterfowl can contribute to varying ice thickness. Retention ponds in residential areas often have aerators and fountains which can cause more hazardous ice.

Indiana Conservation Officers say the best rule of thumb is for everyone to believe they are "walking on thin ice."

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