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Indiana DNR warns against fishing on ice

NOW: Indiana DNR warns against fishing on ice

INDIANA-- Two men attempting to ice fish in Indiana fell through the ice over the weekend.

The two men, both in their 60's are doing just fine, but now the Indiana Department of Natural Resources wants everyone to know to be careful before venturing out onto the ice.

“I fell through in a beaver run one year. Luckily I got out, but my feet never hit bottom," said frequent ice fisher Calleb Dittmar.

Dittmar remembers what happened the day he fell through thin ice into ice cold water.

“Luckily I got out, but man that cold water takes it out of you real fast," said Dittmar.

The same incident happening to two other men on Sunday attempting to ice fish, according to the Indiana Department of Natural Resources.

One incident in Stueben County, where first responders had to rescue the victim.

The second in Newton County. That man was luckily rescued by people who heard his cries for help nearby.

Officials telling ABC 57 both men were testing the thickness with their ice augers in order to fish.

“Which we recommend to do usually near shore, but they were a little further out," said Indiana Conversation Officer, Tyler Brock.

Brock says standing on the shore to test the thickness of the ice is only step one.

Once you’ve safely drilled with your ice auger, you’ll want to measure the inches.

Here are the numbers to keep in mind:

One inch of ice            STAY OFF!!!
Four inches of ice      Needed for safe ice fishing
Five inches of ice       Needed for snowmobiling
Eight inches of ice     Needed to support the weight of a car or light truck.
Ten inches of ice      Needed to support a medium weight truck.


With one of the warmest winter seasons on record so far for Michiana, getting to 10 inches isn’t as likely.

But there’s always plan b, which some agree is the safest bet.

“No fish is worth your life at all. Just wait a little while, this ice will melt and you can take the boat out and fish from shore," said Brock.

“Your life is better than a little fish, so it can wait. Wait until open water and take the boat if you have to," said Dittmar.

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