Monday, January 26, 2009

Safety First

My husband suggested that I include a safety warning or two here - just to be safe.

No one should ever venture out onto ice anywhere unless you are aware of the current ice conditions! I never go out there without first checking with someone who has crossed recently (and knows what they are doing.)

Are there piles of pack ice? Not a good thing to come up on at 60 miles per hour (about 95 km/h.) We've had three very serious accidents in the last two years caused by the nasty combination of speed and rough ice. (Two head injuries and another person with 70+ stitches in his face. Thank goodness all three gentlemen survived and have healed with no permanent damage.)



Are there any pressure cracks? Again, not a good thing to discover on your own. They are even worse after the pieces pull apart and leave a foot or two (or more) of open water between the edges. Yes, I have driven over open cracks, but only with a very experienced person guiding the group. Sometimes the edges of the crack push back together and overlap leaving a slushy spot. Is there solid ice under there? You really should know before driving over it. This one isn't my photograph - I've never stopped at a spot like this...


You also need to be aware of the condition of your equipment and be prepared for the weather. I had to go out onto the ice on Saturday to rescue, I mean retrieve an acquaintance and his nine year-old daughter. The borrowed snowmobile they were using broke down half way across, leaving them stranded and not appropriately dressed for the -5 degree temperatures (about -20 C) and 10 mile per hour winds (about 16 km/h.) I got them home safely - and brought a helmet for her so she wouldn't freeze her poor little face. Why someone would take his daughter out on the ice, on a borrowed snowmobile without a helmet, I will never understand...


One last thing: What is the weather forecast? You may get across the ice, but will you be able to get back? If it is supposed to get windy or start to snow, you may want to think twice, or be prepared to wait a day (maybe two) until the weather clears.

9 comments:

stitching under oaks said...

wow...this is so fascinating. i thought our drive over the mountain last night in snow was dangerous. it was a walk in the park compared to your ice bridge. Love you new header.

jade said...

that's crazy. yeah, we don't have those issues here but my husband would love to partake in some ice fishing!

cinnamongirl93 said...

Hmmm. lots to think about. I'm glad you included all of this info in this post.
As far as the man and his daughter...sometimes people just don't seem to think! I'm sure he learned his lesson and maybe his daughter learned something too!

Brenda said...

Wow. Such a beautiful place. I love your new heading.

Mum-me said...

I love reading your blog! I doubt if I will ever get the chance to snowmobile across an ice bridge, but if I do I will know how to stay safe!

Shannon said...

YIKES!!!! That could be Scary!

denice said...

I have thoroughly, absolutely, COMPLETELY loved every single one of your posts on your daily life and the eccentricities of living on the island! You do realize I can base an entire school unit on this, right? :) I've also been meaning to take photos and inventory of my "stock" and send it to you, just for fun. I love being stocked up and knowing I could go without the market for a few months if I had to.

c|ara said...

Ah, Christmas trees for navigation! Does anyone still get lost?

jacquie said...

ok...maybe i've changed my mind.