Shortly after 1:15 p.m. February 29, 2020 the OPP received a report from an area cottager reporting a sighting of people in the water off the south tip of Beausoleil Island, Georgian Bay Township.
The Southern Georgian Bay OPP Snowmobile Unit currently on patrol were dispatched and arrived on scene prior to the arrival of other EMS Units. The officers began assisting four snowmobilers on three machines who had driven into a combination of heavy slush and open water.
The officers were soon assisted by members of the Penetanguishene and Georgian Bay Fire Services whom the officers had to transport on the ice to the scene to effect rescue efforts. One snowmobile was stranded on an chunk of ice after self rescuing onto that ice chuck.
The wet and cold rescued parties were transported by the OPP Snowmobile Unit to an awaiting County of Simcoe Paramedic Services Unit for treatment of hypothermia and released.
OPP officers stress that ice surface travel is always risky as no ice is safe. Ice surface users should check with local businesses or Snowmobile Clubs to learn of area ice conditions. Alcohol was not a factor in this incident but ice unfamiliarity was and was nearly fatal for these snowmobilers.
OPP Officers and Fire Fighters are very grateful to the kind services offered by an area private citizen who provided his air scoot to assist in this rescue.