The Canadian Coast Guard, in partnership with the United States Coast Guard and the Ontario Provincial Police, have an important safety message for all ice surface users in the vicinity of icebreaking operations and shipping routes in the Great Lakes. Icebreaking operations to assist commercial shipping are currently underway in various areas of the Great Lakes. The following areas will see icebreaking activity in the near future:
- Icebreaking operations may begin as early as January 17, 2015 in the Thessalon/Cockburn Island area in the North Channel of Lake Huron. A Coast Guard icebreaker will be escorting several ships into and out of Thessalon for at least one week.
Dates and routes are subject to change with little or no notice, due to weather, ice conditions, shipping schedules or other unexpected situations.
Broken and fragmented icy tracks left behind by icebreaking operations and other ship traffic may not freeze over immediately. Newly fallen snow may obscure icebreaker and ship tracks and changes in weather contribute to unsafe ice conditions that may remain long after the ships have left the area. All ice on or near the planned shipping routes and icebreaking operations should be considered unsafe during and after ship transits through these routes. The Canadian Coast Guard (CCG), the United States Coast Guard (USCG) and Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) are advising everyone to stay clear of these areas.