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Scott County Sheriff's Office Press Releases

Posted on: December 4, 2023

Scott County Sheriff's Office Urges Caution as Ice Forms on Lakes and Ponds

As temperatures drop, the Scott County Sheriff's Office reminds residents to exercise caution as ice begins to form on lakes and ponds.

The Sheriff's Office emphasizes that while the ice might appear solid, its thickness can be highly variable and pose significant risks. The potential dangers include unexpected falls into frigid waters, especially as the thickness of ice is not consistent across all areas of lakes and ponds.

To ensure safety, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) recommends measuring ice thickness every 150 feet before venturing onto it. A minimum of 4 inches of solid, clear ice is advised for safe walking. Supervision of children is imperative, even if the ice seems thick enough, and educating them about ice safety is strongly encouraged.

"We want everyone to enjoy the winter season safely,” said Sheriff Luke Hennen.  “Taking precautions and staying informed about ice conditions can prevent accidents and keep our community members safe."

The Scott County Sheriff's Office reminds the public that the DNR does not measure ice thickness on Minnesota lakes. Your safety is your responsibility.

For more information on ice safety guidelines and resources, please visit the DNR’s website at

General ice thickness guidelines

Ice thickness graphic from DNR

Image courtesy of the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources


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