Posted: Tuesday, 31 January 2012 11:44AM
Le Sueur County Sheriff Issued Ice Advisory For Lakes
LE CENTER (TEC News) -- With temperatures again pushing into the 40's, Le Sueur County is "strongly recommending" that there be no further vehicle travel on any Le Sueur County lakes.
"I'm trying to error on the side of public safety," said Sheriff Tom Doherty.
According to Doherty, the uncommonly warm temperatures is causing the ice to become stable and several lake have open water.
"We had Lake Tetonka (Waterville) open up probably about the size of a city block," aid Doherty.
It was the same area where the county had a fatality several years ago according to the sheriff.
So Doherty is not only recommending no vehicle travel on area Le Sueur County lakes, but for ice fishermen to get their large fish houses off as soon as possible.
Doherty is concerned if people wait too long the ice is going to break away at the access point and fishermen are not going to be able to get the fish houses off.
So far this season, Doherty says his water rescue team has not been called to pull any people out of the water.
However there have been cases of snowmobiles, ATVs and even a fish house falling into the water.
"It's one of those year you don't know what to expect," says Doherty.
Normal ice thickness at this time of year is around 24 inches, however Doherty says the max they've seen so far this winter has been 13 inches.
And due to the constant melting and freezing, it's not good ice.
"The ice is layered due to the weather we are having," says Doherty.
"It's a concern to me," added Doherty.
The ice issues prompted the organizers of the Minnesota State University athletic department's Big Bobber Ice Fishing Tournament to cancel their event this weekend on Lake Washington.
According to the university, the Big Bobber raffle prize winner will still be drawn at 3 p.m. at Westwood Bar and Grill on Lake Washington.
Plans for a "cancellation party" at Westwood prior to the raffle drawing are in the works with more details to come.
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