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River Ice Safety

The Ottawa Drowning Prevention Coalition, in conjunction with the City of Ottawa, warns residents about the dangers of thin ice.

Rivers, lakes and other open bodies of water may look solid but can be dangerous. If you are in doubt, simply stay away.

Because ice fishing season is not officially over until mid-March, anglers are reminded that the thickness needs to be:

  • 15 cm for walking or skating alone
  • 20 cm for skating parties or games
  • 25 cm for snowmobiles
  • 35 cm for fishing huts

Generally, clear blue ice is the strongest. White opaque (snow ice) is half as strong as blue ice. Grey ice is unsafe - indicating the presence of water.

 

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