Walker, MN (KROC-AM News)- A Minnesota teenager was able to escape a pick-up he was driving that crashed through the ice on a northern Minnesota lake Friday morning. 

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The Cass County Sheriff’s Office says deputies responded to the report of a vehicle through the ice on Leech Lake shortly after 11 a.m. The preliminary investigation indicates a 19-year-old man from Buffalo, MN was operating a Ram Pick-up with a snow plow on a plowed roadway on the lake when a large crack formed, causing the truck to go through the ice along the southern shore of the lake. 


The pick-up driver was not hurt. Cass County Sheriff Bryan Welk offered these safety tips for anyone venturing onto frozen lakes this winter

  • No ice should ever be considered safe.
  • Check existing ice conditions as you travel.
  • Check with local bait shops, resorts, gas stations, and/or other fisherman for conditions.
  • Consider other means of transportation besides a motor vehicle.  (ATV, snowmobile or foot travel are good choices)
  • Do not travel on the lake after dark.
  • Always notify someone of the area you are traveling in and your expected return time.
  • Carry a cell phone.
  • Be familiar with the lake - carry a map.
  • If you need emergency assistance, call 911.
  • Consider a GPS unit to help you on and off the lake.
  • Avoid the use of alcohol.
  • Pay attention to warning signs that are posted. Remember warning signs cannot be posted everywhere.
  • When available, access the lake through a resort or public access and travel only on plowed roads.

The DNR also says no ice is ever safe, however they have recommendations for ice thickness appropriate for certain activities on frozen lakes: 

  • 4" Ice fishing or other activities on foot
  • 5" - 7" Snowmobile or small ATV
  • 7” – 8” Side-by-side ATV
  • 9” – 10” Small car or SUV
  • 11” -12” Medium SUV or small truck
  • 13” Medium truck
  • 16” -17” Heavy-duty truck
  • 20”+ Heavy-duty truck with wheelhouse shelter

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