The Iowa Department of Natural Resources is recommending safety when approaching area lakes and ponds. Fisheries Biologist with the Iowa DNR Chad Dolan says most of the area’s ponds and lakes are unsafe. The Iowa DNR says an ice depth of 4 inches is safe for one adult and ice of 5 to 6 inches is safe for snowmobiles, ATVs and groups of 3 to 4 people.
Dolan says some lakes in our area have open water and the ice remaining on other lakes is very thin. He recommends everyone stay off the ice.
Dolan says anyone who does approach the ice should take a personal flotation device with them to help keep them afloat until help arrives if you should fall in the water. He says if you are not able to get out of the water, it is important to remain as still as possible and tuck into a ball shape to conserve body heat until help gets there to avoid getting hypothermia.
Once out of the water, you should get dry and warm as fast as possible.