2 men treated for abrasions, exposure after truck broke through ice on Fox Lake

FOX LAKE -- Two men were treated for abrasions and exposure after a pickup truck went through the ice on Fox Lake in Dodge County early Saturday morning, Jan. 26.

It happened around 6:45 a.m.

According to Dodge County sheriff's officials, the driver, a 45-year-old man from Cambria and his passenger, a 44-year-old man from Randolph, were inside a Dodge Ram 2500, traveling northwest from the boat launch at The Boathouse Pub & Eatery on Chief Kuno Trail. Approximately 300 to 400 feet east of Maple Point on Fox Lake, the truck broke through the ice.

The driver and passenger were able to get themselves out of the truck through the rear window, before it became fully submerged in 16 to 18 feet of water.

They walked back to The Boathouse Pub & Eatery, where they were met by EMS officials for treatment of abrasions to their hands and exposure to the sub-zero temperatures.

Dodge County sheriff's officials asked that everyone please verify ice conditions before driving on lakes. They suggested people contact Fish Tales Bait Shop in Fox Lake, at 920-520-0015, noting they are "more than happy" to pass along details on ice conditions on Fox Lake. Sheriff's officials noted portions of Fox Lake aren't safe for travel.

Vicki Matheys

"They thought it looked safe, and it wasn't. There's an area that goes all the way across the lake that is very thin ice because there is movable water beneath it. The lake is fantastic, if you treat it correctly. You have to be aware of the lake. You have to be aware of the dangers of the lake so that you can be as safe on the lake as you need to be," said Vicki Matheys, Fox Lake chamber president and manager at The Boathouse Pub & Eatery.

"A pickup with a plow went through some open water, or some shallow ice. Two or three inches is not really good enough for a vehicle to be driving on," said Joshua Rea, who was ice fishing Sunday.

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources is investigating this incident. Meanwhile, Matheys said officials were hoping to get maps out to the public in an effort to keep everyone safe. She noted Sunday that she was worried the coming snowstorm might result in snow covering thin ice, and people might think it's safe. She encouraged everyone to check ice conditions before venturing out.

"'We know that there's an area from Maple Point, which is straight across the lake, and it goes to Elmwood Island, then from Elmwood Island into the channel in Fox Lake," said Matheys.

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