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Take Caution on Ice, Dakota County Reminds Residents

"Ice is unpredictable and never 100 percent safe," says the Minnesota DNR.

Thin ice warning.
Thin ice warning.

Written by Andrea Parrott

The Dakota County Sheriff’s Office warns residents to be careful when going out on the ice.

As a guideline for ice safety, the Sheriff’s Office presents the ice thickness chart for new, clear ice from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.

  • 2" or less - Stay off
  • 4" - Ice fishing or other activities on foot
  • 5" - Snowmobile or ATV
  • 8" - 12" - Car or small pickup
  • 12" - 15" - Medium truck

Double these guidelines for white ice, also known as "snow ice."

According to the Minnesota DNR, the recent snowfall may cover thin ice.

“We are urging everyone to think twice before going out on the ice right now,” Kara Owens, DNR boating and water safety specialist, is quoted in a recent Minnesota DNR news release. “We know Minnesotans are eager to get out and enjoy the snow, but everyone needs to keep in mind the ice on your lake may not be safe.”

Residents should also exercise special caution on lakes with aeration systems, says the Minnesota DNR and the Dakota County Sheriff's Office. Aeration systems can cause areas of thin ice and open water.

The following is the list of aerated lakes in Dakota County from the Minnesota DNR:

Alimagnet, Bald, Blackhawk, Bur Oaks, Carlson, Cliff, East Thomas, Farquar, Fish, Gun Club, Hay, Heine, Holland, Isabelle, LeMay, Manor, Marion, McDonough, Pickerel, Rebecca [Hastings], Roger’s, Schwanz, Thomas (Eagan), Thompson.

See the full list of Minnesota aerated lakes here.

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