Caution advised when going out on the ice of Lake Erie

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CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) – United States Coast Guard officials are asking residents of northeastern Ohio to exercise caution when venturing onto parts of Lake Erie currently frozen by ice .

Officials said just because the ice seems thick enough to walk on doesn’t mean it’s thick enough to support weight or multiple people.

“No ice cream is 100% safe and it can often vary from place to place,” Chief Petty Officer John Masson said.

With the Great Lakes, Masson said melting streams or rivers can quickly change the temperature composition of the underlying water, causing the ice to thin throughout the day.

So while a section of the lake may seem solid enough to walk on at one point in the day, there is no guarantee that it will continue to be so later.

The Coast Guard recommends that anyone involved in activities on or near the lake take all appropriate safety precautions, including wearing appropriate clothing to avoid hypothermia and bright colors so they can be easily seen by other people.

In addition, it is advisable to have safety equipment, such as a whistle, ice punch or screwdriver, or a personal locator beacon or a waterproof VHF-FM radio.

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