U.S. Coast Guard Erie Practices Ice Rescue Training - Erie News Now | WICU & WSEE in Erie, PA

U.S. Coast Guard Erie Practices Ice Rescue Training

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It's the peak season for ice fishing, but any time you venture out on the ice, you risk breaking through.

It's rare, but the U.S. Coast Guard trains throughout the year for the crucial and dangerous moment.

First Warning Weather's Reed McDonough fell through the ice Monday and became the victim for the Coast Guard's rescue training.

With an air temperature of 22, and the water temperature right around freezing, it only takes minutes before your body shuts down.

Using special equipment and rescue gear, the Coast Guard team practiced several different scenarios to get a victim out as quickly as possible.

You probably don't have special dry suits on hand to keep you safe. However, Chief Dan Heitzer said it shouldn't stop you as long as you have one item on hand.

"Make sure you're wearing a life jacket," said Heitzer. "We never want to discourage people from going out and enjoying the natural environment, but we just want to make sure those people are informed and equipped."

He also said always tell someone when you are going out on the ice and where you are going.

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