Hundreds of Anglers Stranded on Upper Red Lake Ice Rescued
November 29, 2022
An estimated 200 individuals were rescued today after a chunk of ice broke free from the main shoreline of Upper Red Lake.
According to a press release from the Beltrami County Sheriff's Office, on Monday, Nov. 28 at 11:34 a.m., first responders received a 911 call from a group of individuals fishing on Upper Red Lake. The callers reported that a large chunk of ice had broken away from the shoreline, with roughly 30 yards of open water stranding the group on the lake.
Several water rescue agencies and vehicles were dispatched to the scene and were lead by officials to the southeast edge of the lake known as Jr's Corner. After an examination of the open water, a narrow spot of the separation was found and a temporary bridge was deployed to begin the evacuation of the stranded fishermen.
According to the Sheriff's Office, first responders assisted the safe evacuation of dozens of individuals.
The Beltrami County Sheriff's Office also states that due to the urgency of getting individuals off the ice safely, as well as the likelihood that several groups were unaware of the separation, Beltrami County Safety Management utilized a Wireless Emergency Alert, or WEA, to notify people of the evacuation. This allowed notifications to be sent to those who are not enrolled in the local notification system and provided GPS coordinates of the evacuation site.
According to the release, at 2:37 p.m. it was determined that everyone requiring evacuation from the ice had been reached and emergency responders cleared the scene.
The Beltrami County Sheriff's Office were assisted by Kelliher Fire and Rescue, Red Lake Nation Fire, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Minnesota State Patrol, Blackduck Ambulance, Lake of the Woods Sheriff's Office and local resorts.