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Coast Guard rescues 18 people from breakaway ice sheet on Lake Erie

Coast Guard rescues 18 people trapped on broken ice sheets at Lake Erie, Mich. (Coast Guard/Released)

The U.S. Coast Guard said it rescued 18 people who were stranded on an ice sheet on Lake Erie.

The ice sheet broke away as people were snowmobiling and doing other activities near Catawba Island, the USCG Great Lakes tweeted Sunday, Feb. 6.

“Rescue efforts began about 1 p.m. after an MH-65 Dolphin helicopter from Air Station Detroit noticed approximately 20 people on an ice floe, with several ATVs looking for a route back to land,” the Coast Guard said in a news release.

A “Station Marblehead airboat and Air Station Detroit helicopter” was deployed along with a “Good Samaritan” with an airboat, the Coast Guard said.

Seven people were hoisted onto the helicopter, four were rescued by the Coast Guard’s airboat and the others were taken to shore by the Good Samaritan, the Coast Guard said.

None of those rescued needed medical attention.

“The Coast Guard urges all who seek recreational opportunities on the ice to take precautions, not chances,” the Coast Guard wrote. “Remember to dress appropriately for the water temperature, not the air temperature; to wear a life jacket and carry a reliable form of communication; and to carry icepicks or screwdrivers that can help them self-rescue if they go through the ice.”

No other information has been released.

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