NPS urges caution about river ice

ST. CROIX FALLS — As warmer spring weather arrives across the St. Croix Valley, the National Park Service urges people to use caution regarding ice on the St. Croix River.

The NPS said persons going out on ice-covered areas on the river should:

  • Look for clear ice. Clear ice is generally stronger than ice with air bubbles in it or with snow on it. New ice is usually stronger than old ice. Four inches of clear, newly-formed ice might support one person on foot, while a foot or more of old, partially-thawed ice may not.
  • Watch out for pressure ridges or ice heaves. These can be dnagerous due to thin ice and open water.
  • Know ice seldom freezes uniformly. It could be a foot thick in one location and only one or two inches a few feet away.
  • Know ice over floweing water and currents is often dangerous. This is especially true near streams, bridges and culverts.

Already this year, two people have drowned in the St. Croix River after snowmobiles they were riding on the ice fell in the river in areas of open water.
Visit www.dnr.state.mn.us/safety/ice/index.html for more information about ice safety.

The next few days through Saturday will have forecast highs of 38 degrees today and climbing to 48 degrees on Saturday. Conditions will be mostly sunny each day. There is a chance of a shower on Saturday.

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