‘No ice is safe ice’: OPP urge public not to venture onto frozen bodies of water

OPP stress, no ice is safe ice
OPP are stressing to local residents that no ice is safe ice.

OPP say lakes and rivers might look peaceful, but looks can be deceiving.

Const. Joseph Ayotte from the Peterborough County OPP said Monday fluctuating temperatures are making ice unstable and weak.

“You can hear it cracking behind us so it looks safe right now, but no ice is safe ice,” said Ayotte.

So far this winter, Ayotte says there have been three deaths on the water. Two people died in December on Jack Lake, and one person was found dead on Sunday on Belmont Lake near Havelock.

READ MORE: Body pulled from Crowe River Bay area of Belmont Lake

Brian Tilbury, 47, went missing on Saturday, and Ayotte says the Kitchener resident was riding an ATV when he went through the ice in the Crowe River Bay area of Belmont Lake.

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An OPP helicopter found Tilbury’s body on Sunday afternoon.

“A helicopter came in from Orillia and was able to locate him in the water, and then Havelock-Belmont-Methune Fire Department assisted with the recovery,” said Ayotte.

Ayotte adds that such incidents show that tragedy can strike at any moment.

READ MORE: Staying safe — Snowmobile organization offers tips during Safety Week

“We are asking everybody to remain off the ice,” he said.

“Wear a flotation suit if you are going to be travelling on any water, check the ice beforehand, bring ice picks, a cellphone — make sure it’s fully charged — try not to travel alone, and if you are travelling alone, make sure you tell somebody when you’re going to be leaving and expected arrival time,” Ayotte added.