On December 9, 2019, two people were travelling in an SUV on Dore Lake (approximately 115 km north of Big River, SK) to go ice fishing. There were numerous other vehicles on the lake at the time. As temperatures have been relatively cold, it may be expected that the ice was thick enough to drive on. However, the SUV broke through the ice. The two people inside the vehicle were thankfully able to escape and did not report any serious injuries.
Several lakes and rivers in Saskatchewan are starting to freeze over, but some bodies of water are still not solid enough to support the weight of vehicles. To be sure, check the ice thickness before you travel on it.
As a guideline, you need at least 10 cm (four inches) of ice to walk on, 20 cm (eight inches) to drive a snowmobile or ATV on, 30 cm (12 inches) to drive a car or light truck on, and more than 30 cm (12 inches) to support a heavy truck. It is also recommended to keep your speed low when crossing ice and to slow when approaching a shore line.
Avoid ice that:
- looks slushy;
- has thawed, then frozen again;
- is near moving water;
- is layered, caused by sudden temperature changes; or
- has structures on it, such as pressure ridges.
For more information regarding ice safety, please visit: https://www.redcross.ca/training-and-certification/swimming-and-water-sa...