Chicago Fire Department, Coast Guard Rescue Man from Icy Lake Michigan

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s U.S. Coast Guard, 9th District, issued the following news release:

The Coast Guard and the Chicago Fire Department teamed together to rescue a man from icy Lake Michigan, Thursday afternoon.

The name of the rescued man is not being released at this time.

At about 3:30 p.m. CST, a watchstander at Coast Guard Station Calumet Harbor (http://www.uscg.mil/d9/sectlakemichigan/STACalumetHarbor.asp), in Chicago, received a call from the Chicago 911 Central Dispatch reporting a man was stuck in the ice in the vicinity of East 75th Street in Chicago. An ice rescue team from the station joined with personnel from the Chicago Fire Department in responding.

The Coast Guard’s ice rescue team arrived on scene at 3:43 p.m. and assisted the ice rescuers from the fire department in pulling the man from the ice. By 4:05 p.m., all ice rescuers were off the ice and the rescued man was in the hands of emergency medical services. He was taken to University of Chicago Hospital and was listed in critical condition.

When the man was first pulled from the ice he was unresponsive, but after initial aid from responders the man became responsive and was able to confirm he was alone and no one else was on the ice or in the water with him.

The training on the part of the Coast Guard and the Chicago Fire Department lead to a quick and effective rescue,” said Petty Officer 2nd Class Anthony Griffith, officer-of-the-day at Station Calumet Harbor. “Through our professional relationship we accomplished a great rescue today.”

The Coast Guard wants to remind the public to make a commitment to ice safety, since varying levels of ice thickness are common on the Great Lakes. If people do choose to go on to the ice, they should remember the acronym I.C.E. — “Intelligence, Clothing, Equipment.”

  • Intelligence – Know the weather and ice conditions, know where you’re going, and know how to call for help. Also help others find you by remaining upright and standing to give rescuers a bigger target to locate you. Only do this if it is safe to do so.
  • Clothing – Have proper clothing to prevent hypothermia; dress for the water temperature, not the air temperature. The public is encouraged to wear retro-reflective clothing in case of a search taking place at night. Avoid wearing cotton and wear layers of clothing that wick away moisture like Polypropylene, which retains more of your body heat than any other fabric. Polypropylene thermals are the best extreme cold weather base layer of clothing made.
  • Equipment – Have proper equipment: marine radio, life jackets, screw drivers/ice picks, etc.

Retrieved from:  Firefighter Nation

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