By Jaykob Storey 
BELLEVILLE — In response to a trio of snowmobile-related deaths on waterways this past weekend, the OPP and the Ontario Federation of Snowmobile Clubs are warning the public about ice safety.
The events occurred across south-central Ontario. A 53 year-old man died on Dark Lake in Haliburton on Friday night, and a 25-year-old and a 22-year-old went through the ice on Go Home Lake in Georgian Bay Township.
The OPP Highway Safety Division states, “No ice is 100 per cent safe,” and urged snowmobilers to stay off the ice whenever possible.
The release included the following safety checklist for snowmobilers.
- Check ice thickness and quality before riding onto any frozen waterway.
- Only travel where ice is already well-tracked and others are present, and where ice roads and fishing huts are in place.
- Be mindful that ice conditions can vary from day-to-day, from hour-to-hour and from one location to the next.
- Never travel on ice alone, at night or while impaired by alcohol or drugs.
- Avoid slushy or untracked ice or ice near moving water or dock bubblers.
- Watch out for obstacles like rocks, stumps, docks, ice roads and fishing huts.
- Wear a buoyant snowmobile suit and carry ice picks.
- Do not travel on ice for several days after any mild temperatures and stay off the ice altogether as soon as spring temperatures stay at or above 0˚C.
The OPP and OFSC said that they want to promote safe and responsible driving and remind snowmobiles that driving on ice goes beyond just a personal choice. It affects your loved ones and puts the emergency personnel who attempt to rescue you at risk as well.