Amherst Police: Ice on lakes, ponds not safe to walk on

Staff Writer
Thursday, December 28, 2017

AMHERST — Several days of below-freezing temperatures is not enough to make the ice on lakes and ponds safe to walk on, according to Amherst public safety officials.

Dec. 19 at 2:49 p.m., police officers were called to Puffer’s Pond in North Amherst, where a man was walking across the frozen surface.

Detective Marcus Humber said the man was advised to get off the pond, though the man argued that there were 5 inches of ice and that this was sufficient.

Even though no rescue was needed, Fire Chief Walter “Tim” Nelson said his department is prepared should someone fall through thin ice on a body of water.

“You need a few weeks of cold weather to make any ice safe to walk on,” Nelson said.

Puffer’s Pond also has a regular current that means it takes longer than several other ponds and lakes to freeze.

Nelson said firefighters train for ice rescues and have equipment needed to pull someone to safety.

“We’re ready for that,” Nelson said.