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Gurnee man rescued from West Loon Lake

Updated: February 5, 2013 6:27AM



ANTIOCH TOWNSHIP — Wanting to be the first to go ice fishing sometimes means you are the first to fall through the ice.

A 64-year-old man from Gurnee did just that a little before 2 p.m. Thursday on West Loon Lake when he went through the ice, but was lucky that he could stand in the hole with his head just above the waterline, said Antioch Fire Chief John Nixon.

As firefighters and divers got two air boats onto the ice at the East Loon Lake landing off Grass Lake Road, a man living in the 40700 block of Champaign Drive got a ladder from his garage, carried it across a small neighborhood park, placed it on the ice and pulled the victim out.

“He got there just before the cavalry,” said Nixon. “It was a 50-50 shot. Sometimes, you end up with two people in the water.”

The ice was only about two inches thick and less in areas where there is current on the two lakes.

“Make sure you know the thickness of the ice. I’d encourage ice fishermen to give it more days of a freeze,” Nixon said.

“A lot of these lakes around here are not safe right now,”he added. “Areas with undercurrents can be deceptive.”

Authorities remind people that you should never walk onto ice that is less than six inches thick. If you can see water under the ice, the ice is not safe.

They also suggest staying off retention ponds or other bodies of water not designed for recreational purposes.



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