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Bemidji man uninjured as truck goes into lake

Employees of a tow trucking company look over the best way to extract a truck that went through the ice about 50 feet from the south Lake Irving boat access on Friday afternoon. No one was injured in the incident, and the driver of the truck was attempting to clear snow off the ice to help make it thicker. FORUM NEWS SERVICE/Monte Draper

BEMIDJI, Minn. -- A Bemidji man avoided injury Friday after his vehicle went into Lake Irving while trying to plow snow off the lake surface to make thicker ice, police said.

At about 1 p.m., police saw a GMC pickup truck with a plow attachment that had fallen through the ice. The truck’s owner, James George, 63, Bemidji, was not injured.

Police said George usually plows portions of the lake to prevent ice insulation and make a thicker, safer surface. Tow trucks were working Friday afternoon to dislodge the truck from the ice and slush.

Friday’s incident comes just more than a week after a 55-year-old man accidentally plunged an SUV through Lake Bemidji ice Dec. 12. He also was uninjured.

That incident, as well as reports of vehicles breaking through ice in other counties, prompted the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources to warn that ice remains too thin.

Last winter, six people died from breaking through ice with snowmobiles or vehicles, the DNR reported.

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Zach Kayser
Zach Kayser covers local government and city issues for the Pioneer. He previously worked for the Wadena Pioneer Journal, and is an alumni of the University of Minnesota, Morris. 
(218) 333-9791
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