Ice Safety

How to be safe on ice

  1. Never assume that ice covered water is safe. The only safe ice is found at local ice rinks!
  2. A minimum of 6" thickness of ice is necessary to safely support 1 person. This requires 5-7 days of temperatures in the low 20's on still water.
  3. Always go out with friends and let others know when you will be on the ice and when you will return. If possible take a cell phone with you wrapped in a plastic bag.
  4. Wear life Jacket! Life vests and float coats provide flotation and thermal insulation should you go through the ice.
  5. Only go on ice during daytime or if the area is illuminated after dark.
  6. NEVER go out on ice to rescue a pet, animal, or a toy that has fallen through the ice. Call 885-7640 to report the problem.
  7. Keep an extra set of clothing in your car or nearby in case need dry clothing.
  8. Never walk onto a lake or pond with fountains or aerators. These devices prevent the water from freezing in a manner that makes it safe.
  9. Carry ice picks or some other tool that can be used to help yourself out of the water should you fall through. Also carry a noise making device (whistle) to help signal help if needed.
  10. If you fall through the ice stay calm. Try floating/rolling onto the ice and away from the hole if possible. If not, you can conserve body heat by keeping your knees nearer your chest and minimizing movement.
  11. NEVER drive a vehicle on to the ice. The ice in Central Ohio is never safe enough to support this weight.

If someone falls through the ice

  • Call 9-1-1. have someone wait for the Fire Dept. so they can direct them to the exact location of the emergency.
  • Do not attempt to rescue the victim by going onto the ice. If it didn't support the victim's weight it won't support you. You might try throwing rope, pole, floats, etc. from the shore to assist the victim.
  • If the victim is retrieved to shore before the Fire Department's arrival keep them warm with dry clothes, blankets, etc.