South Dakota GFP Cautions Anglers on Ice Conditions

#Due to an unseasonably warm winter and recent rains in many areas of South Dakota, the state Game, Fish and Parks Department is urging sportsmen to use extreme caution when venturing onto the ice of lakes, rivers and ponds."We want people to be as safe as possible," said GFP Assistant Wildlife Director Emmett Keyser. "There was a tragic drowning this week in Pierre, and we are getting reports of vehicles and anglers breaking through the ice across the state. We haven't had good ice for most of the winter, and it seems to be getting worse every day."Keyser said anglers in South Dakota should not take any vehicles - including cars, pickups, all-terrain vehicles or snowmobiles - onto the ice because it is not safe.Those who are going ice fishing should take precautions, such as not fishing alone, bringing plenty of rope, keeping ice-safety picks in their clothing, wearing life jackets and protecting their cellphones in zip-lock bags."Above all else, use common sense," Keyser said. "If ice looks rotten, it probably is. With the warm winter we have had, there isn't much safe ice. So if it looks bad, don't venture onto it."

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