Dangers of walking on frozen Lake Michigan

Winter's frigid temperatures have left much of Lake Michigan covered in ice. Many are venturing onto the ice to check out the rare conditions.

But, this can come with some major hazards.

Just over the weekend, three people fell into the icy waters in Grand Haven, Michigan.

The individuals were rescued but officials are emphasizing it is very dangerous to go out onto the lake no matter how stable the ice may look.

A lot of folks were taking the risk anyway in St. Joseph, Michigan the last few days.

One photo shows people standing on Lake Michigan. Another shot submitted by Jason McIver shows people walking on the lake, heading toward the lighthouse.

As of last week, 88 percent of the Great Lakes were covered with ice.

U.S.Coast Guard officials said the expected rise in temperature could make going out onto the ice even more unpredictable.

“We get a lot of people going to check out the ice,” said Petty Officer George Melvan. “Aside from falling through, it’s rough terrain and cold. People go out in groups and the weight breaks the ice underneath and we get the call.”

Long-time St. Joe resident Wayne Petzke said he has seen plenty of people walking on the frozen lake.

“People are on the ice with reckless abandon this year,” Petzke said. “They have no respect for how treacherous it can be out here.”
There have been no incidents so far involving people falling through the ice in St. Joe and Coast Guard officials want to keep it that way.

They suggest people stay on the shore and have someone with them in case of an emergency.

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