IDNR reminds anglers to be safe when ice fishing this winter


Review life-saving safety measures before heading out on the ice

information provided by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (December 26, 2018) – The Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) encourages potential ice fishers to review life-saving safety measures before heading out on the ice, drilling a hole, and dropping a line.

“Outdoor recreation in the winter can be invigorating and a lot of fun, but can turn into a dangerous situation in just seconds. Being prepared and ready for anything while outdoors this winter, especially if you are headed out on the ice to fish, can save your life,” said IDNR Conservation Police Chief Rafael Gutierrez.

Those planning to ice fish should stay off of ice that is less than four inches thick. New ice is usually stronger than old ice. Four inches of clear, newly formed ice may support one person on foot, while a foot or more of old, partially thawed ice may not.

It is recommended that anglers carry a rope or floatation device with them to help assist if someone falls through the ice. Wearing a life jacket/personal floatation device (PFD) is always recommended when fishing offshore, including when ice fishing.

For additional information on ways to make your next ice fishing trip a fun and safe one, visit the Ice Fishing in Illinois information guide.