Rescue crews from Coast Guard Air Station Detroit at Selfridge Air National Guard Base conducted rescue training Wednesday on ice-covered Lake St. Clair.
Multiple aircrews from the air station, which is one of the few Coast Guard units that train to respond to those in distress during summer and winter.
“Training is the foundation for our operational capability,” said Cmdr. Keith Overstreet, executive officer of Air Station Detroit, in release. “The Coast Guard’s motto is ‘Semper Paratus,' which means 'Always Ready,' and to be ready we must train in the diverse environments in which we are required to operate.”
Coast Guard officials remind people be properly equipped when they head out onto the ice, and heed all warnings or instructions about local conditions. Ice conditions can change rapidly on the lakes and bays.
“Boaters often ask me what they should take with them to help be spotted from a helicopter if in an emergency situation, and I tell them to have strobe lights, flares, and a portable marine band radio," said Lt. Jason Neiman, a pilot at the air station, in a release. "The same is true for ice fishermen."
Coast Guard officials remind individuals to think I.C.E before heading out:
- Intelligence - know the weather and ice conditions, know where you are going, and know how to call for help. Never go out alone.
- Clothing - have the proper clothing to prevent hypothermia. Wear a waterproof exposure suit and a life preserver.
- Equipment - have the proper equipment. Carry two ice picks or screwdrivers, in case you fall in. Use these items to dig into the ice and pull yourself out. They are more effective than bare hands! Carry a whistle or noise maker to alert people that you are in distress. Carry a cellular phone or marine band radio in a waterproof container so that you can call for help if you come across trouble.