KENT COUNTY, Mich. – Ed Hawks said he was walking his dog around Big Crooked Lake in Kent County Tuesday morning when he saw his neighbor going onto the frozen lake with an ice boat.
Hawks said he told the man he didn’t think the ice looked safe and asked him if he had a life jacket. The man said no and headed out onto the lake.
Not too long after, Hawk said, the boat fell through the ice.
Hawk and another neighbor sprang into action, grabbing ladders and even a garden hose to try to bring the man back to shore while rescue crews made their way to the scene.
After almost 20 minutes in the water, the man was saved by a rescue diver. He was taken to a local hospital, where was treated for hypothermia.
Deputy Don Hamilton of the Kent County Sheriff’s Department said there’s no such thing as truly “safe” ice – only “safer” ice.
If ice is two inches thick or less, stay off; four-inch thick ice is safe enough to walk on and ice fish; five inches can handle a snowmobile.
(YouTube: What to do if you fall through the ice)