Sledding excursion across ice-covered lake turns dangerous

December 29, 2012 8:52:50 PM PST
A video showcases a winter hazard that could have easily claimed multiple lives in California.

A group of people on a sledding excursion made some cardinal mistakes while crossing an ice-covered lake.

It began when one man accidentally slipped off the thin sheet of ice and into the lake.

"We saw this guy coming across the ice really fast and it went from cheering to all of a sudden, just an unbelievable amount of panic and chaos," said Mickey Herman, who shot the video.

One man went to the ice's edge to try to help- but he also fell in.

Others in the group tried to help- only to plummet into the lake themselves.

A crowd gathered on shore, frantically screaming for help.

Five minutes after the first man went in, nearly a dozen people were in the Water as others threw ropes and inner tubes- with no luck.

"It was very hard to watch, it was gut wrenching," said Herman.

Nine harrowing minutes into the ordeal, all of the victims somehow managed to scramble out of the water.

All are fine- but safety experts are surprised about the happy ending.

They recommend the following:
-Use ropes
-Get down on your belly to help save someone in the water
-Don't take a chance with thin ice


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